At Augusta Preparatory Day School, the boys soccer team already has had a season filled with success.
Augusta Prep goalie Harold Rivner recorded a career-high 16 saves during the Cavaliers' 2-1 win over Westminster last month. The two teams meet again today at 4:30 p.m. at Westminster to decide the regular-season region title.
Photo by J. Scott Trubey
A 12-game winning streak, top 5 ranking in the Georgia Independent School Association and 300 career coaching wins for head coach Doug Williamson is enough to keep most teams satisfied.
The Cavaliers want more.
"For them, it's not good enough," Williamson said. "Nobody's mailing it in. They've rededicated themselves."
A team gut-check came late September after a tough loss to Frederica on the road. The 6-2 loss snapped a 12-game winning streak and was a game, Williamson said, his team should have won, or at least played better.
"This group understood that what happened down at Frederica was not acceptable to anybody in the program," he said. "They've rededicated themselves to winning again. We'll play hard."
The Cavaliers will get all they can handle today when Augusta Prep travels to Westminster for the second and final regular-season match between two of the top teams in the GISA.
It took a heroic performance from Augusta Prep goalkeeper Harold Rivner for the Cavaliers to survive a 2-1 win over Westminster more than a month ago. Rivner made 16 saves while Thomas Knerr, the GISA's leading scorer, and Cary Goldsmith each scored a goal in the victory.
Today, the battle takes place at Westminster.
"It's an important game," Williamson said. "It's a chance to win the region."
The game was supposed to be played this past week at Westminster, but rains from Tropical Storm Tammy forced coaches to postpone the match.
Augusta Prep already had a region game against John Milledge scheduled for Tuesday, but still needed to play Westminster before the GISA AAA State Tournament begins next week. With the game rescheduled for today, the Cavaliers are forced to play two region games in two days.
"There is concern," Williamson said. "It's hard to play two games in two days. If the weather is as bad as it's forecasted to be, we may not to get out to practice much, either."
Although fatigue and lack of practice might be a factor, Westminster is in a similar boat.
The Wildcats have had limited practice because of rain, and with a game already on the schedule Tuesday, the team also will play twice in two days.
"We have a philosophy of control what you can control," Williamson said. "We can't control the weather. We had a fun and productive practice inside instead."
Augusta Prep has secured home-field rights in the first round of the GISA AAA tournament.
Today's game at Westminster will begin at 4:30 p.m.
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