Columbus, Toombs, Westminster boys, Oconee County, Lovett, Fellowship girls win soccer championships

The second day of the GHSA soccer championships showcased the ending of the seasons for Classes 2A at Mercer, 3A at McEachern and 4A at Duluth.

See the recaps from the opening day or check out the brackets for the boys and girls. The recaps from Wednesday are below.

Class 2A girls at Mercer

Fellowship Christian 5, Mount Paran 0

Fellowship learned a lot in last season’s state championship victory and after using that knowledge, the Paladins secured the program’s third state championship in controlling fashion.

“This is a team that has absolutely just come together,” said Fellowship head coach Andy Trevers shortly after his sideline ice bath as the clock struck zero. “They play for each other, and they love each other. They love playing this game and you can see; they play it beautifully.”

The Paladins took a 1-0 lead on a goal from Cade Leach, assisted by Avery Paulson six minutes into the match. At the eight-minute mark, Leach – again assisted by Paulson – extended the margin.

“To come out and control the game the way that we did, we didn’t expect that,” Trevers said. “We know Mount Paran; we respect their team. But out goal was two goals in the first 10 minutes.”

Paulson found the next at the 23rd minute to put Fellowship up 3-0. Paulson got her third assist of the match when Lily Kate Elphick’s kick found the net at the 37th minute to put Fellowship up 4-0 just before the half.  Paulson was assisted by Kelly Rodman to extend the lead to 5-0 for Fellowship.

“We really got a hold on the ball and controlled all areas of the field,” said Trevers, a North Londoner who has coached the Paladins with high standards of play. “They continued to control the game the way they did. It doesn’t surprise me; I know how good they are. But the fact that they did, that says an awful lot about them.”

Mount Paran was trying for the program’s first-ever state championship while Fellowship has won three – 2016, 2023 and this season.

Class 2A boys at Mercer

Toombs County 2, Model 0

Two goals from two senior leaders in the first half proved to be the difference for Toombs County on the way to the program’s first-ever state championship.

Forward Yovanny Zamorano scored at the 27:17-minute mark to put Toombs up 1-0 and less than two minutes later, defender Braley Dietrich found the net to cap scoring. The Bulldogs moved past Kendrick 10-0, Berrien 9-0, Drew Charter 3-0 and Fellowship Christian 3-1 on the path to the championship.

Model was trying for the program’s first state championship after defeating North Cobb Christian 7-0, Union County 1-0, Pierce County 2-1 and Providence Christian 2-1.

Class 4A girls at Duluth

Lovett 3, North Oconee 2

The Lovett Lions defeated the North Oconee Titans in the 4A GHSA Girls Soccer State Championship on Wednesday night, 3-2 as the Lions complete an undefeated season, going 21-0 on their way to the state championship victory.

North Oconee struck first with a Grace Maddox goal in the 22’ minute to take the one goal lead late in the first half. Lovett followed it with a Mary Camp Newton goal five minutes later to even the score at 1-1. Mary Parrish Green broke the tie with a goal in the 36’ minute for Lovett to take the lead for the first time in the match. Maddox scored her second goal of the night for North Oconee in the opening minutes of the second half to even the score.

Approaching the final minutes of the match, Lovett’s Olivia Aiken broke the tie with a goal in the 56’ to take the lead 3-2– a goal that ultimately decided the match and won the Lions the state championship. Lovett goalie Helen Sherer had two saves on the night in the championship victory.

The Lions won their third GHSA state championship in the last four years and their sixth overall with their first in 2001 followed by championships in 2005, 2016, 2021, 2022 and this season.

Class 3A boys at McEachern

Columbus 2, Hebron Christian 1

It took two periods of extra time for the Blue Devils to outlast Hebron and a goal from senior forward Jackson Briggs in the second overtime period proved the dagger. The victory marked Columbus’ first-ever soccer championship.

Kalen Robinson, a senior forward, scored the opening goal of the match in the first half to put Columbus up. Hebron’s star freshman Benji Gunji tied the game four minutes later to force extra time.

Briggs found the net at 8:23 in the second overtime period to put Columbus ahead for good. Columbus moved past Hepzibah 10-0, Mary Persons 3-0, defending-champion Coahulla Creek 2-0 and Oconee County 1-0 on the way to the championship.

Hebron was trying for the program’s first state championship after beating Carver-Atlanta 10-0, Dawson County 6-0, Savannah Country Day 2-1 and Bremen 3-1 throughout the playoffs.

Class 3A girls at McEachern

Oconee County 2, Wesleyan 1

Jasmine Lockamy’s second-half goal put Oconee County up 2-1 and gave the Warriors a title defense and second-ever state championship.

The Warriors took a 1-0 lead on a goal from junior defender Kate Walker at 12:10 in the first half. Wesleyan tied the match at 1-1 on a goal from junior midfielder Emma Glazier where the score would remain at halftime.

Lockamy, a sophomore forward found the net at the 26:18 mark to put the Warriors up for good. Last year’s championship was the first for Oconee County while Wesleyan was trying for the team’s third after winning in 2017 and 2019.

Class 4A boys at Duluth

Westminster 2, Johnson-Gainesville 0

After being in the GHSA Class 4A boys’ soccer state championship and losing it last year to Johnson-Gainesville, the Westminster Wildcats return to glory as they were able to avenge last year’s defeat, beating the Knights, 2-0.

“It obviously feels much better than last year,” said Westminster head coach Scott Snyder. “I was very proud of our effort last year, I thought we gave them the best game they had all year. With that said losing was tough, so being able to avenge that loss this year was huge.”

A goal from Aditya Kaul at the 22-minute mark of the first half broke the 0-0 stalemate. A few minutes after the first goal of the match, Westminster’s Tristen Lewis received a red card, disqualifying him from the match. Kaul’s goal was the difference in the first half as the Wildcats took a 1-0 lead into the break.

Westminster outshot the defending champion Knights in the first half, 9-4.

Two minutes into the second half, a second red card was given, this time to Johnson-Gainesville’s Jalil Chavez, removing him from the rest of the match. A Will Stewart header off of an Alex Na assist added another goal for the Wildcats as they were able to take 2-0 lead which proved to be the final score.

Johnson-Gainesville was going for its third state championship in a row. Westminster finished 16-4-2 on the season and won their 15th state championship in program history. The Wildcats most recently won in 2019 after they completed a three-peat, winning state championships in 2017, 2018.

“Bringing home another state championship to Westminster has a lot of connections around it. I had alumni from the class of 2001 on. Writing, calling me, texting me, showing up at the stadium, all in the show of support of the program. I’ve really worked hard and developing something that goes beyond just four years. It was great for this year’s team to see how many people care,” said Snyder.





Tags: ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply