HAMILTON, Ga. -- The Harris County girls soccer team went undefeated through Region 1-AAAAA and won its opening round state playoff game against Windsor Forest 6-0. But facing defending AAAAA state champion Northgate on Wednesday was a different story as the Tigers' season ended in 4-0 loss at Tiger Stadium.
The Tigers appeared to be the aggressors early on as it opened the game with a quick run out on the opening kick when Caitlyn Callaway kicked a pass toward Autumn Lewis, but Lewis' kick was stopped by Viking goalkeeper Mattea Lewis.
"That was a designed play," Harris County coach Rob Grant said. "We were trying to score one on them quick -- trying to catch them off guard."
Harris County had one more shot on goal defended by Lewis in the early going, but once the Vikings got past the first few minutes it was the Tigers' goalies that were under attack.
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Kayla Gray had seven saves before being injured on a sliding stop at the 12:46 mark of the first half. Bailey Hotard relieved Gray for 8½ minutes and had two saves of her own.
Reece Weaver opened the scoring with a break away shot that went past Gray for a 1-0 lead at the 23:39 mark of the first half.
The Vikings added one more score before intermission when Ashley Keller scored with only 1:52 remaining for a 2-0 lead.
Keller struck again with a penalty kick with 19:12 remaining in the game.
Katie Salha added the final tally with 16:22 left in the game.
"I think we were fighting hard and playing well in the first half," Grant said. "We made a few mistakes in the course of the game that were real hard for us to recover. They're a good team. They are the defending state champions.
"We gave them everything we got. We had a few balls bounce the wrong way and it put us on the wrong end of the scoreboard."
Wednesday at Tiger Stadium
Goals-- Northgate- Reece Weaver, Ashley Keller 2, Katie Salha . Goalies-- Northgate- Mattea Lewis 5 saves. Harris County, Kayla Gray 17 saves, Bailey Hotard 2. Records-- Harris County, 13-6-1; Northgate 19-3.