The sun may have been shining, but the field was slick as usual. Players were sliding into each other as Highlands varsity soccer team defeated Tallulah Falls 2-0 last night.
Highlands Head Coach Brett Lamb said this is the team’s third game this week, and the most challenging.
“I thought we came out very well and attacked with a purpose and got several scoring attempts, but was only able to get one to find the goal,” said Lamb. “I felt like with this being the third game in three days and Tallulah Falls being the biggest challenge of the three, we played very well. We had a few breakdowns in coverage and communication but we overcame that with hard work and hustle. We used our depth and strength to come out with a 2-0 victory.”
Lamb added that Tallulah is always a tough game because of the payers’ skill and size on the back line. Even though The Highlanders walked away with a victory yesterday, Lamb said there’s still work to be done.
“We needed to keep our play consistent and not make stabs on defense,” he said.
Senior Jake Billingsley said they played well, especially being a third game this week. And even though the conditions on the field were soggy, Billingsley said the team is used to that by now.
“We practice on it every day,” he said. “It’s to our advantage at times.”
Highlands scored both of their goals in the first half, but Sophomore Collin Stoltzfus said they really played well later in the game.
“We played really well in the second half, things got really intense,” said Stoltzfus. “Having a wet field, well, it just makes it real dirty for the players. Tonight was a dirty game.”
Sophomore and goalie Ethan Tate said Tallulah’s defense kept trying to play the close game at the goal, but Tate and his defense frequently practice for that. Highlands next plays Hayesville at home at 6 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 24. Tate said they lost a close game to Hayesville last year.
“They have strong shooters, a strong mid-field, and fast strikers,” said Tate. “It will be a tough game.”
Lamb said he knows Hayesville will be a challenging.
“They have two forwards that are fast and good goal scorers so our defense will have to be on their A game,” he said. “It has been a great game over the past few years and this one should be no different.”
Article and photos by Brian O’Shea
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