Sports

June 7, 2014

Former Murray County star leads Georgia to all-star soccer win

CHATTANOOGA — Former Murray County High School standout Jose Ruiz connected on a header in the 79th minute for what proved to be the game-winning goal as Georgia edged Tennessee 2-1 in the 11th edition of the Stump on Sports All-Star Classic boys soccer match Friday at Finley Stadium.

Ruiz’s goal completed a second-half comeback for the Peach State stars, who trailed 1-0 at halftime despite having several good scoring chances in the first 40 minutes.

“There is quality talent all around on both sides, but in all-star games, you’re never really sure how the talent will come together,” said Calhoun coach Matt Rice, who headed up Team Georgia. “However, our guys really started putting it together, really from the very first practice we had, and I think that really showed out here today.”

Tennessee struck first when it came to scoring, though, finding the net in the 19th minute as the speedy Anfernee Avila (Cleveland) gathered up a long punt by keeper Jonathan Crossman (Chattanooga Christian), beat a defender near the top of the box and caught Georgia keeper Raul Moreno (Calhoun) out of position before sliding an easy shot into the back of the net.

Georgia had three excellent scoring opportunities in the first half. Two came in the 23rd minute, but Crossman knocked down a header by Ruiz before recovering to stop a hard shot from Pedro Garcia (Coahulla Creek).

Crossman was equal to the task again in the 35th minute, exchanging a bloody nose for a diving knockdown of a Ruiz blast from point-blank range. A follow-up shot was smothered in the box by Tennessee’s defense to preserve the precarious lead.

Georgia came out with an extra burst of urgency to open the second half, peppering the Tennessee goal with multiple shots in the first three minutes before finally breaking through in the 48th minute. Following a long run and a pass from Ruiz, Miguel Villa (Northwest) put a ball through the box right on the foot of Garcia, who one-timed it past Tennessee keeper Adam Pickett (Signal Mountain).

Both teams missed great chances to take the lead over the next 20 minutes of action. A save by Manuel Gonzalez (North Murray) on a free kick from 11 yards out kept the score tied and Pickett make a great leaping save on a shot in the 65th minute before seeing another shot sail high two minutes later.

But with just over 10 minutes remaining in the match and a penalty-kick shootout looming, Ruiz, who was selected the Georgia Player of the Game, went to work. After taking a long pass down the left side of the pitch, he made a move past a defender and fired on the goal only to have the ball carom off the bottom of the crossbar.

Ruiz followed with a header that also clanked off the crossbar, but with Pickett trying to scramble to his feet and Tennessee being unable to clear the ball out of danger, Ruiz’s second header found its mark to put Georgia in front for good.

Georgia outshot Tennessee 14-9, with Crossman and Moreno making four saves each. Crossman was named the Tennessee Player of the Game for his first-half shutout effort.

The win snapped a four-match winning streak for Tennessee, which leads the all-time series 8-2.

The annual Stump on Sports All-Star Classic series — all of this year’s competitions will be in Chattanooga — continues with today’s 7 p.m. football game at Boyd-Buchanan High School. Girls and boys basketball games are at 6 and 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday at Notre Dame High School, while the girls soccer match is at 4 p.m. on June 13 at Finley Stadium. The final day of action is June 18, with 6 p.m. starts for baseball at McCallie School and softball at Frost Stadium.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • Smith wins Limited race at NGS

    Jeff Smith took the checkered flag in the Limited Late Models race Saturday night at North Georgia Speedway, beating Justin Litchford to the finish line for the victory.

    July 31, 2014

  • DSCsoccer2.jpg Ready to get started: Roadrunners add Daser as soccer director

    Dalton State College athletic director Derek Waugh called Kerem Daser a good “fit” as the Roadrunners’ new soccer director.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • CreekFootball.jpg Coahulla Creek enters new era with Barger

    VARNELL — With just two varsity football seasons to its credit and little success in the win column so far, Coahulla Creek High School doesn’t yet have what one would call a proud football history.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rush turning to Gold's

    Dalton is gaining a Gold’s Gym, but losing The Rush Fitness Complex.

    July 30, 2014

  • Dalton State College hires Kerem Daser as soccer director

    Dalton State College athletic director Derek Waugh said Tuesday that Kerem Daser, a veteran soccer coach, is the Roadrunners’ new soccer director.

    July 29, 2014

  • NW vs Cass baseball 6  mlh.jpg Thrown a curveball

    About four weeks ago, Seth Pierce and his family moved closer to Ringgold High School — a move which has big ramifications on two sports fronts. Not only will his departure affect the Northwest Whitfield High School baseball program, the move will also put him back on the football field.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • NW Football3.jpg Prep football: NW Whitfield staying hungry for more success

    Northwest Whitfield High School entered the 2013 season motivated to reach the state playoffs — something the Bruins accomplished.
    This year’s team possesses the hunger to mirror last season’s successes — and possibly more.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Chris Whitfield: Ending ride (kind of) as sports writer

    T wo weeks ago, I was told by managing editor Jamie Jones that I would no longer be a full-time sports writer with The Daily Citizen. It was a mutual decision.

    July 28, 2014

  • Local trio leads NW section to 3rd place

    Tori Owens, of Chatsworth finished 11-over-par Monday in the Junior Sectional Challenge Match at The Landings Club-Marshwood and Magnolia in Savannah for third place in the girls 12-13-year-old 9-hole division. She joined Landon Painter and Hardin Chambless on the Northwest team.

    July 28, 2014

  • SE fball conditioning 1 mlh.jpg Prep football: Raiders enter preseason hoping for breakthrough

    Entering his third year as Southeast Whitfield High School’s football coach, Sean Gray believes the last obstacle is belief.
    He believes this group of Raiders has that quality.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos