East Ridge Advances To Region Soccer Final

Pioneers Beat Boyd-Buchanan 2-0 In 3-A/AA Semifinals

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 - by Jaime Barrett

Two first-half goals weren’t enough to put East Ridge at ease in Tuesday’s Region 3-A/AA boys’ soccer semifinal match at Boyd-Buchanan.

But those early scores proved to be all the Pioneers needed to reach the region championship match for the first time since 2009.

The District 6 runners-up went on the road to face the 5-A/AA champion Bucs, and held on for a 2-0 victory that guarantees East Ridge a spot in Thursday’s region final as well as Saturday’s Class A/AA state sectionals.

“The problem with the early lead is that all the pressure is on you to try to keep that lead,” Pioneers’ coach Jeremy McIntyre said. “Sometimes it’s more scary to be up 2-0, because you feel like you’re safe, but you’re not. I told the guys at halftime that we couldn’t let them get a goal back, because then they would feel like they were right back in it.”

The two teams had tied 1-1 during the regular season, when East Ridge had to play without injured junior forward Kolbe King. On Tuesday, King made his presence felt when he played a through ball over the head of Bucs keeper Austin Walker midway through the first half.

About 15 minutes later, Alex Martinez’s goal gave the Pioneers a 2-0 lead that their defense would hold the rest of the way.

 “We just wanted it,” McIntyre said. “They went in hard. My guys just give it everything they’ve got, all the time. I just love them. They’re workers. Even at the end of that game, when Boyd-Buchanan definitely had the momentum and was pressing, we just had to go play defense, and they never gave up.”

Bucs’ coach Dustin Walker agreed that the Pioneers were the hardest working team in the first half, but Boyd-Buchanan responded in the second period. The Bucs created several dangerous scoring opportunities, including one off the crossbar, but couldn’t put any in the net.

“All the credit goes to East Ridge,” Walker said. “They came out harder than we did. In the first half, they just wanted it more. It was almost like our team didn’t realize the situation we were in until halftime. I think it just hadn’t clicked that this was a win-or-go-home game. But I was proud of the guys’ energy in the second half. We played hard, and started winning balls and creating opportunities. I think if one of them goes in, it changes the whole ballgame, but we just couldn’t finish.”

The Bucs , who were playing with just one senior starter, ended their season at 10-5-1. The Pioneers improve to 13-2-2, with both losses coming at the hands of District 6 champion East Hamilton. East Ridge will face the Hurricanes for a third time Thursday in the 5 p.m. region final. Both region finalists will play in the sectionals on Saturday with a state-tournament berth on the line.

“This means everything to them,” McIntyre said. “From the preseason on, they’ve worked so hard and wanted it so bad. They didn’t want to stop playing. A region championship sounds great. It’s going to be tough, but we’ve just got to keep going. We’re going to go give it 100-percent and see what happens.”

 (E-mail Jaime Barrett at jaimenbarrett@gmail.com)



PREP SCHEDULE

(Please notify us of any schedule changes and times as well as game and match scores at news@chattanoogan.com) Softball: THURSDAY, APRIL 19 Brainerd at Signal Mountain Rhea Co. at Cookeville East Hamilton at Soddy Daisy Howard at Central Bradley at Cleveland Baylor at Whitwell 5:30 p.m. Silverdale at Chattanooga Christian Meigs Co. at Hixson ... (click for more)

Lookouts Make It Six Straight With Double-Header Win Over Jacksonville Wednesday

The Chattanooga Lookouts have swept their Wednesday doubleheader against the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp, piling on a combined 15 runs and five home runs across the two contests. Chattanooga have now won six straight games to move three games above .500. In the first game of the double header the Lookouts scored three runs in the first, second, fourth and fifth innings to keep ... (click for more)

Federal Jury Finds Gillispie Guilty Of 6 Counts In Sex Trafficking Case

A federal jury on Wednesday morning found Corrie Gillispie guilty of six counts in his sex trafficking trial. Gillispie was ruled guilty of two counts of sex trafficking, two counts of kidnapping, one count of transporting a person across state lines for prostitution, and one count of money laundering.  The panel found him not guilty of another charge of transporting ... (click for more)

Attorney Says There Was No Valid Reason To Euthanize Monteagle Family's Pet Raccoon Boomer

A Chattanooga attorney who specializes in wildlife cases says there was no valid reason for health officials to have euthanized a pet raccoon belonging to a family in Monteagle. Candace Bone said the family had owned "Boomer" for three years after getting her from an approved raccoon farm. She said, "We are all devastated. He was just like a baby to us. Boomer slept between ... (click for more)

A Tribute For My Brother – Sgt. Jonathan Gardner, U.S. Army

Seven years ago today, my family and I found out that my brother, Sgt. Jonathan D. Gardner, was seriously injured by a roadside bomb, (explosively formed penetrator - EFP), while on a mission in Kuwait. The EFP went through the bottom of his seat and put a softball size hole in his upper thigh. The doctors said that if the bomb had entered the Humvee an inch to the right, he ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Our Teacher's Pay Cut

The Hamilton County School Board will hold a “working session” Thursday afternoon as steps continue to formulate the FY2019 budget and it is a frightening process in a badly-broken system. Everybody knows it is equally embarrassing and after watching teachers who “have had enough” go on strikes in Oklahoma, West Virginia and Kentucky this spring, I guarantee you that Tennessee is ... (click for more)