COVINGTON - Eastside's soccer teams took the first step in winning the county championship with a sweep of the Alcovy Tigers on Friday.
It took the Eagles a 3-2 win in penalty kicks before securing their 2-1 victory, while the girls won their game 3-1 in regulation.
Eastside 2, Alcovy 1
The Eagles (2-0) could have scored as many as seven goals, but their shots were just off their mark.
After Tyler Marks put Eastside on the board seven minutes into the game, they ended up missing two shots that could have been goals.
One missed shot came less than a minute after Marks' score on an open goal.
The second was a header that went just outside the post.
"That's the same issue they had last year, they couldn't finish on goal. We had a young kid, a freshman out there, Wesley Chambers, he had a few good opportunities but he just couldn't quite get enough leg on it to get it in there," Eastside coach Trent Weiser said. "We had a ton of opportunities but we just couldn't get it in."
Alcovy (0-1-2) tied the game with 29 minutes left in the first half when Quamere Rooks scored on a quick shot.
Rooks took the shot after the ball came off a defender and he kicked the ball in before anyone could react.
Eastside had one more miss in the first half and three in the second.
Following a scoreless overtime, Eastside won in penalty kicks with keeper Greg Morrell, freshman Trent Taylor and Caleb Kernan making their shots.
Morrell blocked two Alcovy kicks, and the third missed shot sailed over the crossbar.
"I followed my instincts. I've played goalie for a long time so I just did what I had to do," Morrell said. "It's great, I love being a team leader. I'm so glad I'm able to come through for my team."
Playing three games in four days may have taken its toll on the Alcovy boys as their passing lacked power and precision.
"I packed it in and that's my fault. We got three games in this week. We gave up seven corner kicks and we took one or two in overtime. They're a pretty good offensive team and we were kind of shell-shocked for most of the game," Alcovy coach Chris Edgar said.
"I told them we had two goals coming into the season. One was to win the county championship and one was the state playoffs. This one hurts because it was a county championship."
Eastside 3, Alcovy 1
The Lady Eagles (2-0) and the Lady Tigers (1-2) started the game going back and forth with Eastside being more aggressive on offense.
Eastside had 24 shots on goal compared to Alcovy's 11.
"We didn't finish our shots. They were at a higher level of anxiety," Lady Eagles coach Libba Willcox said. "They didn't play as well as they did the last game."
Eastside scored its first goal in the eighth minute when Ashton Ziadie fought off Alcovy's Kelly Azar before scoring.
Eastside almost made it 3-0, but a Tara Harrison goal was taken off the board because of an Alcovy penalty in the box.
The other was when Amber LaFond's kick was knocked off course after bumping the post.
The Lady Tigers tied the game nine minutes into the second half when Chelsea Richardson scored from the 18-yard line.
Eastside keeper Kayla Jones tried to stop Richardson's kick but the ball rolled off her finger tips. The ball fell into the goal before Jones could turn around and grab the ball.
Ziadie put the Lady Eagles in the lead three minutes later before assisting in LaFond's score with two seconds left in the game.
Despite allowing Eastside's first goal of the season, Jones had a solid game with nine saves.
Manny Fils can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.