Calera’s boys and girls pick up opening-round wins

Published 12:06 pm Sunday, April 30, 2023

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By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Managing Editor

CALERA – The Calera boys and girls soccer teams were on opposite ends of the winning spectrum in the opening round of the Class 6A playoffs, but both survived and advanced to round two.

The girls picked up a dominant 10-0 victory to advance in easy fashion, while the boys picked up a thrilling 1-0 win to show their ability to handle a pressure-packed playoff game.

Both hosted Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa, and for the girls, they were consistent throughout the night en route to their fourth win in a row.

It marks the strongest stretch of the season for the girls, who had lost three games in a row by a combined 24-1 between March 31 and April 1, taking on some of the best talent from Georgia and Alabama, but they have since bounced back by outscoring the last four 13-4.

It gives the girls their longest winning streak of the season going into a matchup with Class 6A No. 7 Northridge in the second round for a spot in the quarterfinals.

As for the boys, it was a more tense path to the second round, but the Eagles had preparation in tight games leading up to their 1-0 victory against the Patriots in the first round.

Calera had won six in a row heading into the playoffs, including two by one goal, one of which was for the area championship, and four by two goals or less.

The Eagles used those pressure situations down the stretch and their nine games decided by two goals or less this season to pick up the one-goal victory over Hillcrest in the opening round.

Calera is now 12-3-1 on the season and has won 10 of the last 12 games, while all three losses have come by scores of 3-2, 1-0 and 2-0.

Both the girls and boys will now host Northridge in the second round. The Northridge boys are No. 10 in the 6A standings, while the girls are No. 7.