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Tigers fighting until the end

By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY

Daily News

It’s been a tough season, but Troup boys’ soccer coach Eddie Lawson is bullish on the program’s future.

Troup played its final home game on Tuesday, and it fought Kendrick to a 1-1 draw.

Before the game, the team’s seniors were recognized, and while Lawson will miss each of them, he believes the future is bright with so many talented young players.

“We’re going to get better,” said Lawson, whose team is 1-10-1 with one game remaining. “We’ve got a young team. We’ve got a bunch of freshman, and a bunch of eighth-graders coming up. I’m looking forward to the next couple of years.”

Tuesday was all about the seniors, though, and Lawson was hoping they’ll be able to win their last game at Callaway Stadium, but it wasn’t meant to be.

“I just hate that we couldn’t get a win for the seniors,” Lawson said. “I thought all my seniors played well. I’m proud of all of them. I played a lot of seniors more tonight than they’ve played before.”

Kendrick scored first, and Troup tied it when junior Will Bartlett made a penalty kick later in the first half.

The Tigers were in control most of the way and they had plenty of scoring opportunities, but they were unable to find the go-ahead goal.

Troup collected its lone win on March 28, with senior Helsyn Martinez scoring three goals in a 3-1 victory over Griffin.

While the wins haven’t been there, Lawson is proud of the way his team has fought all season.

“The one thing about this team is, they don’t quit,” Lawson said. “Even if they’re down 6-0, they find something to keep fighting for. Cartersville went up on us 6-0 at their place, and we were down a man, and we didn’t let them score the rest of the game. That says a lot about the young men that play, that they’ve got heart like that.”

Lawson added that “some teams when they get down and have a losing season they’ll start bickering, but that hasn’t happened once. We haven’t had that. They just keep playing. That’s all I can ask of them.”

In Tuesday’s girls’ game, Troup appeared to be in great position to win its third game of the season after surging to a 3-0 first-half lead.

Kendrick hung tough, though, and it rallied to pull even, and the game ended in a 3-3 tie.

Senior Breanna Gay, who’ll play for LaGrange College next season, and senior Bryce Liechty scored Troup’s goals.

Troup will close the season next week at Villa Rica.