COVINGTON, Ga. — On a cold and blustery night at Sharp Stadium, the Eastside girls' and boys' soccer teams returned to the pitch Tuesday for the first time in 2021.
The Lady Eagles dominated the Dutchtown Lady Bulldogs, 10-0, in a time-shortened match while the Eagles' defense helped secure a 2-0 win over the Bulldogs to open their respective campaigns.
In a first half that saw the Lady Eagles fire 37 shots, senior Aralyn Everett opened the scoring with 28:29 to go before halftime off a double assist. The play began when freshman Mia Mostek passed the ball to junior Bailey Love, who forwarded it to Everett for what would prove to be the game-winning goal.
Everett quickly secured a hat trick in just over five minutes when she scored on deflection from a shot by junior Katie Oakley, which hit off the crossbar and into Everett's path with 24:30 on the clock. She also found the back of the net on a long assist from Love, giving Eastside a 3-0 advantage with 23:12 to go in the half.
Oakley later scored two goals in a span of 18 seconds. Her first strike was off a ball from freshman Sophia Leal at the 7:41 mark. The second came off a great ball from Love at the 7:23 mark to put Eastside up 5-0 at the break.
Senior goalkeeper Anna Shelton made the Lady Eagles’ defensive play of the match early in the second half. At the 37:42 mark, the Lady Bulldogs had a long breakaway that forced Shelton to come 15 yards off her line to block up and over the Eastside goal.
Immediately following that play, Everett started another quick strike sequence, scoring off an assist from senior Lauren Gates with 36:36 left to play. It was Everett's fourth goal of the match.
Oakley followed with an unassisted goal at the 34:45 mark and added another with 33:21 on the clock off an assist from Everett to make it 8-0.
Oakley would score her fifth goal of the match with 21:26 left to play off a terrific long ball from Gates. The final goal of the match was netted by freshman Abigail Morgan. When Everett sent the ball across the Bulldog goal mouth, Morgan fired it into the back of the net to end the match at 10-0 with 18:51 remaining on the game clock.
After the game, Eastside head coach Joel Singleton had high praise for his offense.
“Katie Oakley and Aralyn both had excellent games and really applied a ton of pressure to the opposing defense. The defense had very little work tonight but they did come through on a couple of second half attacks,” Singleton said. “I was proud of their patience. I especially liked the way we shared the ball tonight. That was exciting to see.”
Seven different Lady Eagles added their names to the match scoresheet.
The boys’ match was a defensive battle.
Caden Coggins scored the game-winner for the Eagles in the 15th minute of play off a corner kick. Liam McGiboney netted a penalty kick in the 37th minute to give Eastside a 2-0 halftime lead.
A scoreless second half resulted in a 2-0 Eagles victory in a hard-fought match.
Union Grove will visit Sharp Stadium to take on Eastside Friday, Feb. 5. The girls' game is scheduled to begin at 5:55 p.m., with the boys’ match to follow at 7:55 pm. The Union Grove clubs opened their campaigns with identical 3-0 wins over Rockdale County on Tuesday night.