0

Heritage girls, Rockdale boys fall in opening round

ACWORTH -- The defending state champions were a little too much for the Heritage girls soccer team Wednesday.

Class AAAAA No. 5 Allatoona, which won the state title in Class AAA last year, then jumped two levels during reclassification, erased a 1-0 first-half deficit by scoring three consecutive goals in a 3-1 victory in the first round of the state playoffs in Acworth.

Allatoona (12-5-1), the No. 2 seed from Region 5, will play at Region 6 champion Lakeside-DeKalb in next week's second round. The No. 3 seed Patriots, who were coming off a heartbreaking loss to Loganville in the Region 8 title game, had their season end at 12-5-2.

"I didn't do a very good job of getting the girls emotionally ready," said Heritage coach Chad Suddeth. "We were absolutely devastated in the region championship loss and just couldn't rebound. We didn't play with that passion that we normally showed, so that's unfortunate."

Heritage grabbed the early lead as freshman Sara Boggus scored from 18 yards out for a 1-0 lead. That would turn out to be the Patriots' final goal of the season as Allatoona got the equalizer seven minutes before halftime when Heritage had trouble clearing the ball.

"They got one in the box and we had a very weak clearance. Kind of our fault for not clearing it," said Suddeth.

Star forward Willough Davis gave the Buccaneers the lead for good with a long goal that got over Heritage keeper Mady Carter's head at the 10 minute mark, and with two minutes to play the hosts made it a 3-1 game.

"We didn't quite measure up tonight, for whatever reason," said Suddeth. "We had no more passion left to dig deep, totally drained."

Heritage, which was trying to reach the round of 16 for the third consecutive season, lost four of its last six games -- three by one-goal margins -- after starting the year 10-1-2.

"Proud of the season, though, (the) girls truly over-achieved and (I) felt like they exceeded expectations," Suddeth added.

The Rockdale boys had their season end in the first round of the Class AAAAAA playoffs as Region 3 runner-up Douglas County picked up a 6-0 victory.

Douglas County will play in next week's second round against the winner of Harrison-Coffee County, while Rockdale, the No. 3 seed from Region 2, finished 5-12-2.

"We went down early and we just couldn't adjust and they had momentum the whole game ... and we just underperformed," said Rockdale coach Alf Holst. "We were a little bit unprepared for the team. Basically, we just couldn't recover."