Sports Columns

March 25, 2013

What's Going On: Rivals play with it all on the line

Last season the main region challenger to Dalton High School’s boys soccer team was Southeast Whitfield.

This year, it’s the guys from Tunnel Hill.

Sure, the last time Dalton and Northwest played, the Catamounts dominated in a 6-1 victory with zero Sub-region 7-4A implications. But they will play again, at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Bruins’ field.

Why do I feel this one could be a little closer?

“We’re going to have to play a mistake-free game,” Northwest coach Ryan Scoggins said after his team’s 2-0 win Friday against rival Southeast. “And we’re going to have to make the most of our opportunities, which there won’t be many of.”

If the Bruins can play the entire game without losing anyone to a red card — they had to play with 10 men in the loss to the Cats and also Friday’s win against the Raiders — they have the talent to stay with the Cats, who are eurosportscoreboard.com’s No. 2 ranked team in the Class 4A coaches poll. Northwest also has that underdog label — haven’t appeared in rankings yet — and that’s a dangerous one to go up against. Just ask all the perceived “favorites” from the NCAA college basketball tournament who lost to a worse-seeded school in one of the first two rounds.

Last season, Southeast beat Dalton at Harmon Field, a win that ultimately was the difference in the Region 7-3A standings. This season, both Dalton and Northwest beat the Raiders and only have one another left on the schedule. Both teams are 4-0 in sub-region play. The winner clinches the No. 1 seed heading into next month’s Region 7-4A tournament, which includes the top four teams from each half of the league. The loser still garners a No. 2 seed, but winning a rivalry game for the sub-region title just sounds sweet.

• As a professional wrestling fan, next Saturday’s “Wrestling for Warriors” sounds like a fun trip back to the past. The event, which will start at 7:30 p.m. inside the trade center, will include 10 matches and showcase former WWE, WCW and ECW wrestlers like Buff Bagwell, Raven, Rick Steiner and The Rock ‘n’ Roll Express.

Tickets are $10 for general admission and $25 for ringside seats, with $3 of each ticket going to the Wounded Warrior Project, which assists wounded military veterans throughout the country.

• Connor Sport Court International’s 2013 Final Four Floor Tour makes its stop in Dalton today, visiting the Dalton State College campus in the Westcott Building from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m.

Connor Sport Court International is the official floor of the NCAA Final Four, which will be played in two weeks at Atlanta’s Georgia Dome. The floor is being transported from Amasa, Mich., and people can come take photos on the floor, participate in basketball competitions and other events.

• All other prep events scheduled for this week are listed in our prep schedule on page 3B. Other local sports events are listed in our Local Sports Calendar on page 2B.

Devin Golden is a sports writer for The Daily Citizen, and his NCAA tournament bracket is beyond busted. But that happens every year. Contact him at devingolden@ daltoncitizen.com.

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