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Grangers tuning up for state

By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY

Daily News

The LaGrange High boys’ soccer team continued to tune up for the state tournament with a 4-0 home win over Central-Phenix City on Saturday.

The Grangers (11-5), who won the Region 2-AAAA championship, will close the regular season with road games against Pacelli on Tuesday and Smiths Station on Friday.

LaGrange has a first-round bye in the state tournament, and it will host a second-round game.

LaGrange returned from a break of more than two weeks and lost to Buford 3-2 on Friday, and it bounced back with a shutout win on Saturday at Callaway Stadium.

One of the highlights of Saturday’s game came midway through the second half when Cason Blackburn, a senior goal keeper who has signed with Lindsey Wilson College, scored a goal.

After a LaGrange player was fouled, Blackburn was selected to take the penalty kick, and he hammered it into the net for his first and likely only varsity goal.

Tripp Hollstrom, LaGrange’s leading scorer this season, added two goals, and senior Caleb Kostial had a goal.

Everything the Grangers are doing in these final regular-season games is designed to have them prepared for the state tournament where they hope to make an extended run.

“We kind of played a new formation, and tried to experiment,” said LaGrange head coach Shane Pulliam. “We’re going to do that the next couple of games and try to figure out what we can do that still helps us defend and still be able to attack.”

LaGrange’s girls’ soccer team, which finished second in Region 2-AAAA, finishes its regular season with games at Pacelli on Tuesday and Smiths Station on Friday.