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Eastside girls soccer defeats Jackson for second win of 2023 season
Eastside’s Joanna Funes (8) crosses the ball against Jackson County at Sharp Stadium on March 15. - photo by Covington News/File Photo

JACKSON, Ga. — On the Eastside Lady Eagles’ visit to the Jackson Lady Red Devils Tuesday, their offense led the way to a 6-4 win. 

The match saw the return of sophomore Joanna Funes, who was named Newcomer of the Year by the Covington News last

season.  Funes made an immediate impact, assisting Nelia

Dailey on the opening goal with 28:07 left in the first half to put Eastside up 1-0. 

The score remained 1-0 until Abigail Morgan found the back of the Jackson net to make it 2-0 with 18:45 remaining. Morgan secured her brace soon after with just over 16 minutes left in the first half.

The Lady Red Devils scored twice before halftime to cut the Lady Eagles lead to 3-2 at the break.

Funes scored her first goal of the season just over four minutes into the second half to push the Eastside lead to 4-2.  

Neither team would score again until Eastside’s Lauren Davis netted her team leading seventh goal of the season with 11:49 left in the game.

That goal would prove to be the game winner giving the Lady Eagles a 5-2 lead. After Jackson scored to make it 5-3, Mallory Shurtz scored her first goal of the season with only 5:36 left in the match to put Eastside back up by three. 

A late penalty kick by Jackson cut the deficit down to two, but the Lady Eagles’ victory remained intact. 

The six goals were the most scored by Eastside in a game this year. Five different girls scored which was also the most in a single match thus far. 

Head coach Joel Singleton was excited for his team’s win Tuesday night. 

“So good to win,” Singleton said. “Joanna Funes came back to us today and her impact was immediate. She is still not in game shape, having missed five months, but she will put in the work to get there.

“Our defense, despite the four goals, really held their own. Jackson had two players that were excellent and they played through them all night. [Goalkeeper] Alexa [Corley] made a ton of great saves tonight. She is still learning so much but she is growing every game.”

The win improves Eastside to 2-4-2 overall (0-1-0 in Region 8-AAAAA). Their next match is scheduled for Friday at 5:30 p.m. against Region 8-AAAAA foe Clarke Central (6-4-0, 1-1-0 Region 8-AAAAA) at Eastside.