Greenbrier High School boys soccer coach Graeme Connolly and girls coach Wes Kendrick violated the most basic of coach-speak rules this week. Instead of bemoaning their respective close losses to state powerhouse McIntosh a week ago, the coaches basically acknowledged it as a moral victory.
I hope they don’t get in trouble for breaking the code.
The McIntosh squads came to Blanchard Woods Park virtually identical with the boys sporting a 8-0 record and as the top ranked team in Class AAAAA while the girls were 7-0 and ranked No. 2.
The Lady Wolfpack led 2-1 before the Lady Chiefs tied it in the last five minutes and went on to a 3-2 win on penalty kicks.
The boys team survived the first 15 minutes of a Chiefs’ barrage, allowing the one goal they would surrender, losing 1-0.
“The McIntosh game gave us the belief that we can play against the top teams in the state,” said Connolly after the Wolfpack (5-1) clinched the Region 2A-AAAAA title Wednesday night.
No slouch themselves, the Wolfpack are currently the No. 8 team in Class AAAAA. After the debacle a year ago in which players were kicked off the team for drinking on a trip, that may be paying dividends this year.
Connolly likes sophomore goalie Connor Washer, who got one of his first starts a year ago as a freshman on the road against McIntosh, the eventual state champion, as the Wolfpack lost 4-0. In 2014, when not insulated by a tough defense, Washer has been stout in goal.
To accompany a roster of talented, experienced juniors and seniors, Connolly has been getting solid to spectacular play from sophomores Mekhi Honore and Myles Duncan, who were brought up from JV recently.
Kendrick, whose team is a win or a loss by less than two goals to Lakeside Tuesday night from clinching the Region 2A-AAAAA title, has a team built for the future. He has five seniors on a 24-man roster that has allowed three goals in five games while jumping out to a 4-1 start to the season.
Tough Scheduling Working
Harlem’s baseball team is 5-7 this year, but all of the losses have come to teams in Class AAAA or above, including six to Columbia County teams.
In Class AA, the Bulldogs have been perfect, going 3-0 in Region 3, including a 4-1 win on the road Wednesday against Screven County in eight innings. With the score knotted at 0, the Bulldogs erupted for four eighth-inning runs, beating the Gamecocks which entered the game at 2-0 in the region as well.