LAGRANGE – They finally met their match.
Including a preseason game against Harris County, the Troup Tigers had won their first four soccer matches this season, so they brought a perfect record into Friday’s home showdown with a strong Smith’s Station squad.
It was a hard-fought game, with Smith’s Station getting a pair of goals to notch a 2-0 victory, handing Troup its first loss of the season.
Troup will look to begin a new winning streak when it visits Opelika on Tuesday, and it will open its Region 5-AAAA schedule on Thursday with a home game against Woodward Academy.
“I think the guys were excited about having a little winning streak here at the beginning of the season,” Troup coach Jase Crenshaw said. “It would have been really nice, but I’m glad this loss came early. The monkey’s off our back. We’ll get ready for region.”
Troup got a bad break when goal keeper Matt Moore lost a contact lense and was unable to continue.
Senior Thomas Trotter, one of Troup’s top offensive players, moved into goal in place of Moore.
“He said it was almost like has under water. He couldn’t focus,” Crenshaw said of Moore. “We had to pull our other keeper, Thomas Trotter, back to play. So we got in some bad spots in the second half.”
The Tigers thought they’d taken the early lead when Matthew Hale scored a first-half goal, but an offsides call wiped that goal out.
Hale, part of Troup’s outstanding senior class, has signed a letter of intent to play soccer at Young Harris.
“Mentally that puts you in a good spot early, but they called it back,” Crenshaw said.
In Friday’s girls’ game, it was Smith’s Station capturing a 9-0 victory.
CALLAWAY: The Lady Cavaliers went on the road and got a 10-1 victory over the Shaw Lady Raiders on Friday.
It was a balanced scoring effort, with seven different players finding the goal.
Kelly Carlisle led the way with three goals, and Savannah Thompson added two goals.
Chloe McGuffin, Acia Stephens, Michaela Grier, Brianna Vaught and Hannah Hidalgo each had one goal.
In the boys’ game, Shaw won 5-0, handing Callaway its first loss of the season.
Callaway head coach Jake Hembree said it was a tremendous test for his team.
“They’re probably the best team we’ll see all season,” Hembree said. “We learned a lot. It shows we’ve got a long way to go.”
Hembree said his team had some nice scoring opportunities, but Shaw’s goal keeper was too tough.
“They have a keeper that plays Olympic development,” Hembree said. “The first half, we were on fire. We had five or six shots on goal, just perfectly placed where the keeper would get to everything.”
Callaway’s teams, after having their first two Region 5-AAA games rained out last week, will play their region opener on Tuesday at Rockmart, weather permitting.
Callaway is scheduled to be back at home on Thursday to play Pepperell.
Reach Kevin Eckleberry at (706) 884-7311 or on Twitter @lagrangesports