Prep Soccer

Newnan splits games with Douglas County

by Doug Gorman

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Newnan’s Erin Bright focuses on the ball before connecting for one of her three goals during Tuesday’s Area 3-AAAAAA victory over Douglas County at Drake Stadium.

The Douglas County girls soccer team had to know it just wasn’t their day after their bus broke down near Whitesburg Tuesday afternoon on the way to Newnan for the Area 3-AAAAA contest with the Lady Cougars.

Mechanical difficulties, however, turned out to be the least of the Lady Tigers worries as they fell to Newnan 4-0 in a game that started almost an hour late.

Newnan’s boys team wasn’t as fortunate, falling to Douglas County 5-1.

With the win, the Lady Cougars improved their overall record to 7-2 overall and 4-0 in league play.

Newnan kept blasting away at the Lady Tigers’ goal and ended up taking 18 shots in the first half.

Three of them found the mark as the Lady Cougars turned in a dominating performance en route to building a 3-0 lead at the break.

“It was just a solid performance,” Newnan head coach Frank Henderson said. “We just kept working hard.”

Newnan scored the first goal of the game when midfielder Julie Whatley gave the Lady Cougars a 1-0 lead.

The remaining three for the Lady Cougars came off the foot of Erin Bright. Bright’s first shot into the net came less than seven minutes after Whatley’s score helping the Lady Cougars jump out to a 2-0 lead.

The junior forward added goal No. 2 of the day right before the break. Bright put an exclamation mark on the victory when she took a pass from Caroline Thomas midway through the second half to compete her three-goal performance.

“That was just an incredible hat trick by her,” Henderson said. “She did a great job today.”

Despite scoring the first goal of the game, Whatley could have done even more damage for the Lady Cougars, but four of her shots banged off the post.

“It just seemed like she had such bad luck today,” Henderson said. “She had some great opportunities, but they just came up short.”

Newnan’s defense also did a good job of keeping Douglas County from getting many chances, holding the Lady Tigers to seven shots for the entire game.

Rebecca Whitlock didn’t have too many opportunities, but managed to turned away all the shots Douglas County put on goal.

Newnan has another tough challenge Friday night when plays host to Starr’s Mill at home in a non-Area game.

Monday, the Lady Cougars then play one of their biggest games so far this year when it takes on East Coweta to open this year’s three-team Coweta Cup round-robin tournament. The game also will count in the Area 3-AAAAAA standings.

“We know how important it is to win this game,” he said. “We are going to be out for a little revenge, since they beat us last year.”

(To view photos from the Newnan-Douglas County games, visit http://photos.times-herald.com/mycapture and click on Sports for the Photo Gallery.)

Boys – DOUGLAS COUNTY 5, NEWNAN 1: The Cougars fell to 7-2 overall and 3-1 in 3-AAAAAA play after watching the Tigers score five unanswered goals.

Newnan started out in control of the game while taking a 1-0 lead.

The Cougars scored their only goal of the game a little less than 14 minutes into the contest when Tyler Heard sailed his corner kick toward Nick Pelerose. Newnan’s senior timed the shot just right and headed into the back of the net.

The Tigers seized the momentum late in first half, scoring twice. Douglas County took advantage of a couple of Newnan defensive mistakes inside the box to build a 2-1 lead at the end of the first half.

The Tigers then put the game away with three goals in the last 25 minutes of the contest.

Two of Douglas County’s scores game on penalty kicks.

Newnan kept firing away at the Douglas County goal, but it couldn’t convert. Two of the Cougars’ best chances in the second half game on back-to-back corner kicks.

Douglas County added a fifth goal with about two minutes left.



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