State journey continues for soccer teams

Published 1:05 pm Tuesday, May 2, 2017

By Kevin Eckleberry

LAGRANGE – The state journey continues.

The girls’ soccer teams from Callaway and LaGrange, after getting by their first-round opponents a week ago, will be on the field today for the second round of the state tournament.

LaGrange will be at home against Cairo in the Class AAAA playoffs, while Callaway will visit East Laurens in a Class AA matchup.

For Callaway, this is new territory.

Coming into the season, a Callaway High soccer team had never won a game in the state tournament, but that changed a week ago.

Callaway dominated its game against Rockmart from the get-go, and it rolled to a 6-3 victory to make history.

Now, the Lady Cavaliers will look to punch their ticket to the elite eight, and standing in the way is an East Laurens team that has been steam-rolling the opposition this spring.

East Laurens (18-2-1), which won the Region 3-AA championship with an unbeaten record, handled Dodge County 7-0 in the first round.

The Lady Cavaliers are also having an outstanding season.

Callaway (12-6-2) finished second in Region 5-AA to earn a home game for the state playoffs, and it delivered an impressive performance against Rockmart.

With junior Kelly Carlisle continuing to wear out the opposing team’s net with a four-goal performance, Callaway charged to a 4-1 and withstood a late charge by Rockmart.

Brianne Vaught and Chloe McGuffin also scored goals for the Lady Cavaliers.

“We came out and did what we needed to do,” Callaway coach Shonna Yawn said. “I’m real proud of them.”

If Callaway gets the road win today, it would play either Glenn Hills or Putnam County, and there’s a chance that game could be at home.

LaGrange is unbeaten at Callaway Stadium this season, and it will look to continue that trend against Cairo, which beat Thomson 4-0 in the first round.

In its state opener, LaGrange was locked in a hard-fought game with White County, and a late goal by Caroline Thompson was the difference in the 1-0 victory.

Cairo finished third in Region 1-AAAA, which includes two teams familiar to LaGrange, Northside and Columbus.

Cairo and LaGrange have both played Northside this season.

While Cairo lost to Northside 7-0, LaGrange and Northside fought to a 1-1 tie at Callaway Stadium.

If LaGrange wins today, its opponent in the elite eight would be Woodward Academy or Jefferson.