Soccer playoffs getting started
Published 9:25 pm Sunday, April 22, 2018
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
They’re hoping to make history this week.
The Callaway Cavaliers, who shared the Region 5-AA soccer championship with Lamar County, will look to win the first state-tournament game in the history of the program when they host Douglass-Atlanta on Friday night.
That will be one of four state games involving local soccer teams this week, and all of those games will be at home.
Both LaGrange teams will be at home, as will the two Callaway teams.
A year ago, Callaway’s girls’ team broke through for the first state win in program history.
On Friday at 7 p.m., Callaway’s boys’ team will look to follow suit by beating Douglass.
Callaway is the number two seed from Region 5-AA, and its first-round opponent will be Douglass, the third seed from Region 6-AA.
Callaway won both of its games last week to tune up for the playoffs.
After a dramatic 1-0 win over Northgate, Callaway beat Mount Zion 3-1 on senior night.
The Northgate game was tied in the final minute when Ian Bryan scored on a header off of a corner kick from Wes Brooks.
After dropping a pair of games the previous week, Callaway head coach Mike Petite felt it was critical to get a quality win against a solid opponent.
“That was important for us to play as well as we did,” Petite said. “Win or lose, how we played was important, because we’ve got to get back in that rhythm getting ready for the state playoffs.”
Callaway’s girls’ team, which finished second in Region 5-AA to Lamar County, will host South Atlanta at 6 p.m. on Thursday in its state opener.
South Atlanta is the number three seed from Region 6-AA.
After losing to Northgate, Callaway (11-8) closed the regular season on a positive note with a 5-0 win over South Atlanta.
LaGrange’s teams will both play at Callaway Stadium this week after successful regular season.
LaGrange’s girls’ team, which won the Region 5-AAAA championship, will host Gilmer County.
Gilmer County earned its state berth by finishing fourth in Region 6-AAAA.
LaGrange is looking to make an extended playoff run for the second straight season.
Last year, LaGrange (10-5-3 overall) won two playoff games before losing to Jefferson in the quarterfinals.
LaGrange’s boys’ team, which has had a big season under first-year head coach Shane Pulliam, will host Lafayette on Friday in a first-round game.
LaGrange finished second in Region 5-AAAA, and Lafayette is the third-place team from Region 6-AAAA.
While LaGrange fell short against Cartersville in the region-championship game, it has still been a successful season.
With Friday’s 3-1 win over Smiths Station, LaGrange finished the regular season with a 12-4-1 record, and it is a few goals away from doubling the scoring output of last year’s team.
OF NOTE: As of Sunday night, the day and time for LaGrange’s first-round games hadn’t been set.