LaGrange going for repeat title
Published 1:19 pm Thursday, April 19, 2018
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
They’re hoping to make it back-to-back titles.
Last season, the LaGrange Lady Grangers rolled through their Region 5-AAAA competition with an unblemished record to capture the title.
Flash forward a year, and LaGrange’s soccer team is in position to claim a second straight region title, although there’s a lot of work left to do.
LaGrange and Cartersville are both 5-0 in the region, and they will meet today in the region-championship game.
The Lady Grangers will have to go on the road, but that’s nothing new.
Today’s game will be LaGrange’s sixth straight on the road, and it hasn’t played at home since March 20 when it beat Troup.
LaGrange tuned up for today’s showdown with three challenging games since returning from spring break.
After losing to Alexander and Northside last week, LaGrange got a big 4-3 win over Auburn (Ala.) on Tuesday.
LaGrange trailed 3-2 in the second half, but it rallied for the win to take some momentum into today’s game.
LaGrange and Cartersville were supposed to play last month, but the game had to be postponed because of weather concerns.
“We expected to have these really strong teams at the end of the season to prepare us for the playoffs, and it worked out, because we’re going to get prepped for the region-championship game,” LaGrange coach Colin Ross said. “Alexander, Auburn and Northside were the perfect preparation.”
In Tuesday’s game, Auburn took a 3-2 lead early in the second half, and LaGrange answered with goals from Caroline Thompson and Sydney Ormsby.
Thompson finished with two goals, and Eva Hutton also scored for LaGrange.
Ross said he and fellow coach Andy Fritchley have used the past three games to figure out a way to put the most competitive team on the field for the important games coming up.
“The game changed when we made certain substitutions,” Ross said. “That’s what Andy and I have been really focused on with these last three games. I know the girls wanted to win all three games, but we were more worried about OK, we are subbing more, and we’re figuring out who’ll work. And last night, it just clicked. We got the people in the right spots, and that’s what you need.”
Thompson and Ormsby are LaGrange’s leading scorers with nearly 30 goals between them, and senior Maggie Asbell is closing in on 10 goals.
Abby Mazzolini and Emma Mathews have both scored multiple goals this season, and a number of other players have also scored.
LaGrange will finish the regular season with a home game against Spencer on Friday, and it will be at home next week for the first round of the Class AAAA state playoffs.