County lineups prepare for state tournament openers
by Doug Gorman
Local high school soccer teams are going to be busy this week.
Boys and girls teams from East Coweta, Newnan and Northgate are all headed to the first-round of the GHSA state playoffs.
Girls first-round action opens Tuesday, while the boys playoffs begin Wednesday.
East Coweta’s boys head into Wednesday’s first round at home against Alcovy with an undefeated 16-0-1 record and ranked second in the Class AAAAAA coaches poll.
East Coweta captured the Coweta Cup with 2-0 wins over both Newnan and Northgate.
The Indians enter the playoffs as the No. 1 seed out of Region 3-AAAAAA, while Alcovy gabbed the No. 4-seed in Region 2-AAAAAA. The Indians had eight shutouts this year en route to winning the Region 3-AAAAAA title.
East Coweta tied Southwest Whitefield 2-2 in its closest match of the season, and at one point posted six straight shutouts.
Alcovy snuck into the playoffs despite an 8-8 record. The Tigers enter the playoffs trying to snap a two-game losing streak after being outscored by Rockdale and Eastside 13-2.
Losses to East Coweta and Douglas County pushed Newnan’s boys (9-9) to the No. 3 seed and a first-round game on the road at Luella. The Cougars dropped five of their last six games.
Luella enters the home playoff game with an 8-6-2 record. The Lions closed out the regular season with a 5-0 win over Locust Grove.
The Northgate Vikings made it to the playoffs as the No. 3 seed out of Region 4-AAAAA.
Northgate opens the postseason at Hardaway after posting an 9-6 record. The Vikings finished the regular season with three-straight shutouts, including a 6-0 win over Mundy’s Mill.
Hardaway enters the playoffs with a 14-2 record. Hardaway’s two loses came in two of their last four games of the season.
Northgate’s girls hit the road against Lee County, but they better not be overlooked.
All four teams representing Region 4-AAAAA in the playoffs are ranked in the Class AAAAA poll with the Lady Vikings entering the playoffs as the No. 6 ranked team. Region foes Whitewater, McIntosh and Starr’s Mill are all ranked 1-3 in the Class.
The Lady Vikings secured the final spot in Region 4-AAAAA with a 12-3 overall record and an 8-2 mark in the region.
Northgate faces a Lee County team that finished 10-4 and won Region 1-AAAAA.
The Newnan girls are coming off one of their most exciting seasons in recent memory.
Newnan won the Coweta Cup and also captured the Region 3-AAAAAA title to secure the No. 1 seed and home-field advantage in the first round of the playoffs. Newnan opens the Tuesday’s playoffs against Lovejoy.
The Lady Cougars finished the regular-season with an 11-6 record and had 10 shutouts. Newnan was 5-0 in Region 3-AAAAAA action. Two of Newnan’s six loses came in the final two games after it dropped a pair of 4-3 decisions Alexander and Norcross.
Lovejoy enters the postseason as the No. 4 seed in the playoffs.
The East Coweta girls also secured the home field for the first round of the Class AAAAAA playoffs.
The Region 3-AAAAAA title came down to a 1-0 game won by Newnan, forcing East Coweta to settle for second place in the league standings. It was the only league loss this year for East Coweta, which settled for second place in Region 3-AAAAAA and finished with a 12-5 and a 4-1 in league play.
They take on Luella, the No. 3 seed out of Region 2-AAAAAA in Tuesday’s first round. The Lady Lions enter with a 10-6-1 record.