North Murray High School Mountaineers

May 3, 2013

Mountaineers and Colts in Class 3A boys soccer state playoffs

Making the state playoffs is a first for Coahulla Creek High School’s boys soccer team.

North Murray is making it a habit.

The Mountaineers (14-3) will host Franklin County (4-5-1) at 7 tonight in the first round of the Class 3A state playoffs, while the Colts (11-5-1) will travel for their first state-level experience, taking on Oconee County (11-5-2) at 6 tonight in another Class 3A matchup.

The Mountaineers won the Region 5-3A title this season after claiming the Region 7-2A crown in 2012. Franklin County’s Lions finished fourth in Region 8.

“According to their coach, they barely squeaked in,” North Murray coach Matt Chambers said. “They’ve just got enough talent to get into the state playoffs for the first time in five or six years.”

The Mountaineers are in just their fourth season of competition but are working on becoming a fixture in the soccer postseason. While competing in Class 2A the past two seasons, they advanced to the second round of the state playoffs in 2011 and made a run to the quarterfinals last year.

With a win, North Murray would host the winner of Blessed Trinity and East Hall in the second round. The Mountaineers are ranked sixth in eurosportscoreboard.com’s Class 3A poll. Blessed Trinity is ranked fourth.

Chambers didn’t shy away from talking about his team’s possible second-round foe.

“We’ve been making more of an emphasis to play the ball out wide,” he said. “If we make it through to the next round, we’ll have to play all areas of the field (against Blessed Trinity).”

Success in the first round of the state playoffs has been the rule for North Murray, which beat Callaway 3-1 in 2011 and Dawson County 2-1 last season. But Chambers isn’t expecting a relaxing evening against Franklin County.

“We’ll be in for a game,” he said. “It won’t be an easy game by any means. They got to state, so they’ll be decent. It won’t be a blowout. I want us to play our game and control the field and do a couple more things to get us ready.”

Coahulla Creek, meanwhile, doesn’t have the luxury of state tournament experience.

The Colts came one win short of making state when they were eliminated from the Region 7-2A tournament last season. After finishing third in Region 5-3A this year, Coahulla Creek is matched with the No. 2 seed from Region 8.

“They have a goalie with a huge leg who can kick it three-quarters of the field,” Colts coach Eric Parker said of Oconee County. “Their middle forward is probably their best player. They’re a very disciplined team. When you’re at this point, everyone is a good team.”

Parker said the main objective is to keep his players from overanalyzing the match. While the Colts don’t have playoff experience, their opponents didn’t make the tournament either of the past two seasons.

“We’re trying to keep it calm and make it like every other game we’ve played,” said Parker, who’s in his first year leading the Colts. “You know, they can’t get (too) tight for a playoff game. In the playoffs, the worst thing you can do is overthink everything. ... When we’re at our best, we can play with anybody. When were at our worst, we’re still pretty good.”

Oconee County isn’t ranked in Class 3A, but Region 8 champion North Oconee holds the No. 9 spot. In the one match between the two teams, North Oconee won 2-1.

“From what I can tell, the top two, North Oconee and Oconee, are pretty good,” Parker said. “There’s a dropoff between the top two and the next level.”

1
Text Only
North Murray High School Mountaineers
  • DHS at SE soccer 7 mlh.jpg 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.

    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prep Baseball Roundup: Raiders out of hunt for the playoffs

    Needing a win to keep Southeast Whitfield High School’s baseball season meaningful, Raiders coach Brad Lofton turned to a pair of senior pitchers on Friday at Heritage-Catoosa.
    The seniors didn’t disappoint, but it was the offense and the defense that couldn’t come through.

    April 12, 2014

  • Prep Roundup: Bruins power past Cats for key victory at home

    TUNNEL HILL — Similar to Wednesday’s Sub-region 7B-4A baseball series opener at Dalton High School, Northwest Whitfield fell behind early Thursday versus the Catamounts.

    April 11, 2014

  • Prep Roundup: Dalton golf teams in form at Fields Ferry

    Even in wet and muddy conditions, both the Dalton High School boys and girls golf teams are sharpening their games at the right time.
    With the Region 7-4A tournament scheduled in two weeks, both the Catamounts and the Lady Cats finished second during play at the Fields Ferry Invitational in Calhoun on Monday. Despite the soggy conditions, Dalton’s Jacob Brown tied for medalist honors with a 2-over par 74 to lead the Cats to a 313 combined score in the six-play, four-score format. Dalton finished three strokes behind tournament winner LaFayette.

    April 8, 2014

  • Wrestler of the year 2014 2 mlh.jpg All-Area Wrestling Team and Wrestler of the Year: Winning another title was the only goal for Wheeler

    When Dalton High School wrestler Sidney Wheeler won a state title for the first time two years ago as a sophomore, he admitted he became a little complacent about what it would take to replicate the feat — perhaps not noticeably so to most observers, but enough to take success for granted. Wheeler believed it a matter of course that he would win state again, and he thought the second title would simply be the middle child in a high school three-peat.

    April 6, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prep Roundup: N. Murray’s offense shut down by Canes

    North Murray High School’s baseball team may not be among the group tied for first place in Region 5-3A, but the Mountain-eers are sitting fairly comfortably in fourth place.
    If the regular season ended today, that would still put North Murray in the state playoffs for the first time.

    April 4, 2014

  • Prep softball: N. Murray’s Silvers heads to Covenant

    In just about every part of the recruiting process, Covenant College did a little extra to show its interest in Sarah Silvers.
    It spoke volumes to the North Murray High School softball player.

    April 1, 2014

  • Prep soccer: Morris boys earn Class 2A ranking

    It’s nothing new for a local high school boys soccer team to be among those in the eurosportscoreboard.com state rankings.
    It is new for that team to be Morris Innovative.

    March 18, 2014

  • Prep roundup: SE offense keeps foot on throttle

    As long as Southeast Whitfield High School’s baseball team continues to hit the ball and score runs the way it has so far this season, it really won’t matter what the defense does.
    Coach Brad Lofton still likes how the Raiders’ fielding is improving.

    March 11, 2014

  • NM at DHS baseball   1  mlh.jpg Prep Roundup: A little bit of momentum

    Neither Dalton High School baseball coach Shane Ramsey nor North Murray coach David Redmond has had much reason to complain about their offensive production this season.
    Defense is another matter.

    March 7, 2014 1 Photo