Dalton High School Catamounts

April 12, 2014

Prep Roundup: Unbeaten streak rolls on for Cats

Replicating the start of last year’s Class 4A state title match, Dalton High School’s boys soccer team needed just four minutes to score its first goal at Southeast Whitfield on Friday.

The Catamounts scored five more — and again defended their crown of dominance in the sport.

Dalton built a 6-1 lead before Southeast scored twice in the final two minutes of its senior night, and the Catamounts won 6-3 at Raider Stadium for their sixth win against the Raiders in the past two seasons. Dalton’s undefeated streak continues at 37 matches with the non-league victory.

Ranked No. 1 in eurosportscoreboard.com’s Class 4A poll, Dalton (14-0-1) worked possession into Southeast’s side of the field and Justen Macias received a pass and chipped over the charging Southeast goalkeeper, Ivan Ortiz, to put the Catamounts ahead quickly.

“Scoring early takes the pressure off,” Dalton coach Matt Cheaves said.

Dalton, which clinched the Sub-region 7B-4A championship weeks ago, scored twice more — Churrui Huitanda in the 15th minute on a similar play to the first goal and Eder Mora in the 16th minute on a free kick that managed to slide through a sea of players and inside the far post.

Seventh-ranked Southeast (9-4-2) earned a penalty kick on a late tackle in the 18th minute, and Miguel Hernandez converted to give Southeast fans their first reason to cheer.

Huitanda gave Dalton its 4-1 halftime lead when his shot from around 20 yards out deflected off a Southeast player and sailed into the net’s top-left corner.

“It was poor marking on the first goal,” Southeast coach Kevin Kettenring said. “The second two looked like confusion for the keeper. They were right in that middle ground of not sure whether to come or not. The fourth was just (bad luck).”

Catamounts defender Pepe Gardea scored on a rebound in the 58th minute and Javier Rodriguez scored Dalton’s last goal in the 67th minute. After Dalton’s Kiko Rodriguez received a red card for his second yellow card in the 73rd minute, Southeast earned its second penalty kick for an arm grab near the net. David Gonzalez converted the 79th-minute chance, and the Raiders scored again in the 80th minute.

“They got two goals in the final two minutes,” Cheaves said, “and we were playing down a man and had pretty much all subs in.”

Dalton took 11 shots on goal to Southeast’s five, but the Catamounts had 18 set plays from free kicks, corner kicks or deep throw-ins to the Raiders’ nine. Ortiz made three saves while Dalton keeper Samuel Fraire recorded two.

• Southeast girls 1, Dalton 0: Jennifer Contreras’ 88th-minute goal gave the Lady Raiders (3-8) a positive ending to their season.

After the teams played scoreless through regulation, Contreras’ shot off a rebound bounced just inside the left post. Southeast goalkeeper Sidney Covington made 10 saves, including two in extra time on shots from Liz Cloud and Angeles Altamirano.

“We have a pretty small senior class this year of four,” Southeast coach Mark Parsons said. “We have a big junior class with a lot of playing experience and we should be improved next year.”

While Southeast won’t compete in next week’s Region 7-4A playoffs, Dalton (8-4-1) enters as a No. 3 seed from its sub-region.

“Hats off to Southeast,” Dalton coach Tony Carlson said. “They finished the game. They earned it and deserved it.”

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Dalton High School Catamounts
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