High School Soccer
Heritage girls handed loss on penalty kicks by Holy Spirit
ATLANTA — The Heritage School girls may have lost the battle on Thursday in a trip to play Holy Spirit Prep in a Region 1-AAA soccer showdown that ended in a 3-2 defeat by way of penalty kicks.
But the war’s far from over according to Lady Hawks head coach Ron Rineer.
Rineer watched his team trade goals twice through regulation in a matchup of undefeated region lineups before being unable to keep up with Holy Spirit in PKs, which ended with the Lady Cougars winning the round 4-3.
Ansley Dieckmann, Calista Eckert and Sullivan Wilkins all were successful on penalty-kick attempts, but a pair of misses left a big enough opening for Holy Spirit to take the first of two regular-season meetings by the slimmest of margins.
“It’s a tough loss, but it’s not the end of the world,” Rineer said. “We showed a lot of moxie, a lot of character. We know we’ve got another game with them at our place. The tiebreaker is goal differential, so we know if we can win by more than a goal the next time we play, it will be to our advantage.”
A Heritage School lineup that includes just two seniors — Dieckmann and transfer student Kaitlyn Squires — saw eighth grader Jaina Eckert factor in both Lady Hawks goals prior to overtime.
Older sister Calista Ecker and Kate Everett contributed to the scoring as well for Heritage (3-2, 2-1) which has lost both of its games this season after 80 minutes of play.
The Lady Hawks opened the season with a 3-2 double overtime loss against No. 4 state-ranked Deerfield Windsor.
Heritage junior goalkeeper Lillie Smith made a key save with the Lady Hawks trailing 2-1 that kept her team in the game.
The team now moves on to play Loganville Christian in a Region 1-AAA doubleheader today on the road.