SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. — Competing for a state championship has been the expectation once again for the Social Circle Lady Redskins in 2023.
Being in a four-team region guarantees their spot in the state playoffs, but the Lady Redskins want more.
This week, Social Circle has the possibility to win a second-straight region championship which, according to Peyton Brooks and Faith Young, holds tons of significance for the team.
“Winning the region is a good first step to possibly going to state,” Brooks said. “It’s like if we win the region, we know we can do it going into the playoffs.”
Brooks, a junior, has scored a team-high 39 goals this season with Kambrie Morrow and Aubrey Spruell tied for second-most with four each.
Meanwhile, Young, a sophomore, leads Social Circle with 14 assists, and Brooks is second on the team with seven assists.
Goalkeeper Addie Stracner has collected 40 saves on the season, too.
But there’s another important aspect of the Lady Redskins’ season that they believe will play a huge role in a region title win and beyond.
“We need to become more comfortable with each other by listening,” Young said. “Don’t take things to heart, but understand we’re just trying to work together and build a team.”
The Lady Redskins have leaned on a key motivational factor all year — winning last year’s region and state titles.
Brooks doesn’t think the feeling behind bringing home both banners will “ever go away.” However, she and her teammates want to experience that all over again.
“It makes us want to step up more and be leaders,” Brooks said. “It makes us want to work harder, too, knowing that we did that.”
So far so good for the Lady Redskins’ pursuit toward a region crown as they stand at 4-0 in region play.
They began Region 5A-Division I play with a 4-2 win over Prince Avenue along with two wins against Jasper County 11-1 and 10-3, respectively. Last Friday, Social Circle enjoyed an 8-2 victory over Oglethorpe County, too.
Currently, Social Circle is riding a six-game winning streak, as a result.
The start of the season with the Lady Redskins’ non-region slate wasn’t as kind.
The Lady Redskins opened the year 0-3 with a 10-0 loss against Northgate, a 4-0 defeat at Walnut Grove and a 6-3 road loss against Athens Academy. They got in the win column with a 10-0 rout of Newton followed by a 10-1 triumph at Georgia Military College.
The two-game winning streak was halted by a 5-1 defeat at George Walton Academy.
Though the non-region slate only produced one win, the Lady Redskins learned a valuable lesson from each match.
“It helps us know that we can lose. It was very humbling, but that also motivates us,” Young said. “Because our record was 1-4, but we didn’t give up.”
Five games remain on the Lady Redskins’ regular season schedule.
After March 21’s battle against Duluth, Social Circle will close out its Region 5A-Division I lineup at Oglethorpe County on Wednesday and the region finale on Friday at Prince Avenue.
The final two games of the regular season will be home matches against Eastside and Putnam County.
All of the experiences this season have the Lady Redskins confident heading into the season’s home stretch. Nevertheless, Brooks believes her and her teammates’ desire matches their confidence.
“We have to have the right mindset, because we definitely have the talent. Everyone just has to come and work together. We just all have to want it,” Brooks said. “We just want to learn from our past games and see what we need to work on. We want to go all in for it.”