Back-to-backPublished 3:10pm Tuesday, April 8, 2014
Hartselle Tigers win county soccer title
Hartselle High School’s boys soccer team (15-3-2) fought from behind in the second half to defeat Decatur’s Red Raiders, 3-1, and win the Morgan County Tournament championship at the Jack Allen Soccer Complex in Decatur on Saturday afternoon.
In the girls final, Austin defeated Decatur, 2-1.
Trailing 1-0 at the half, the Tigers tied the hard-fought battle on a free kick goal by Jacob Pohl at the 18-minute mark. Hartselle grabbed the momentum at that point and took the lead on a penalty kick by Ian Cummings with 13:25 left. Dalton Golden iced the game with 4:16 left when he broke away from Red Raider defenders and scored Hartselle’s third goal.
The championship win was Hartselle’s second in a row against the same team. The Tigers also won county titles 2006 and 2010.
Decatur (7-5-2) scored the go-ahead goal with just under 25 minutes to play in the first half while the Tigers struggled to find its offense.
“The first half didn’t look like we were going to find a way to win the game,” said Hartselle head coach Reagan Rhone. “I talked to the players at halftime and challenged them to step up their effort in the second half. They accepted the challenge and came up with a big win.”
Several times in the second half play had to be stopped to enable injured players to get off the field. A Hartselle player had to leave the field for medical attention. His head injury turned out not to be serious.
“It was the most physical game we’ve played all year,” Rhone said.
Hopefully, we can maintain the momentum for the remainder of the season. The Tigers have six regular season games left.
“It’s a great honor to be county champs for the second consecutive year,” said Cummings. It’s especially gratifying for us seniors. I feel good about where we are and believe we have the desire and ability to finish strong.”
Girls All-Tournament Team
Austin: Millie Olinger, MaryBeth Boonarkart and Haley Knabe
Decatur: Nataiie Frith, Molly Neill, Rachel Breuers and Emily McNeil
Hartselle: Leah Roberts
Priceville: Jill Paulin
Brewer: Aleena Kennedy
West Morgan: Bre Thorne
Danville: Kelsie Hanline
Boys All-Tournament Team
Hartselle: MVP Ian Cummings, Brock Hickman and Dolan Golden
Decatur: Guadalupe Romero Tirado and Drew Douthit
Austin: David Ocampo
Priceville: Lamar Burch and Max Bergman
Brewer: Matthew Murphree
West Morgan: Noah Brazelton
Danville: Jason Haynes