Valdosta Daily Times

Local Sports

March 23, 2013

Lowndes soccer beats Valdosta

VALDOSTA — Lowndes’ varsity soccer teams swept crosstown rival Valdosta in non-region action Friday night. They games were played at Valdosta State University's soccer complex.

Lowndes’ girls started the night off with a 2-0 win over the Lady Wildcats, and were followed up with the boys’ 3-1 win.

Although it was considered a home game for Lowndes — Martin Stadium is currently under renovation and the teams were forced to play at VSU — the crowd was a near even-split as the Winnersville rivals battled through two highly-contested games.

The Vikings (7-4, 3-0 Region 1) scored a pair of first-half goals before adding a late goal in the closing minutes to ice their victory over the Wildcats (3-8, 0-4 Region 1).

“It was a great crowd,” Lowndes boys’ head coach Jordan Breit said. “We appreciate all of our fans. It was a big one. It always is when we play Valdosta. We've got some things to fix, things to work on. You are always trying to get better, but it is a win.”

Lowndes’ Christian Houglin got the Vikings onto the scoreboard first, beating Valdosta goal keeper Adam Murphey on the left side in the 21st minute.  

Nine minutes later, the Vikings were on the scoreboard again when Lowndes’ Chris Wilmont had a ball deflect off a Wildcat defender and get past Murphey, propelling the Vikings ahead 2-0.

“Early goals usually decide matches,” Breit said. “Soccer is a sport where 1-0 is a great game. So early goals are always great.”

The teams played even in the second half. Valdosta got a goal with 19 minutes remaining when Jamel Armstrong was awarded a penalty kick after being hit inside the box.

Armstrong drove the ball past the right side of Lowndes goal keeper Caleb Dawson, making the score 2-1.

“Pre-game, that is what we talked about: we were going to get Valdosta's best game,” Breit said. “I think it is a great rivalry. Sometimes we come out on top, and tonight we did.”

The Vikings quickly responded. Eli Gilmore broke past the Wildcat defense and scored a goal to make the score 3-1.

“That is a our team right there; we work 90 minutes,” Breit said. “We are a team of hard workers. It doesn't matter if we are down 2-0. It is nice to have this many young men know the value of hard work.”

Valdosta had its chances. After just four shots on goal in the first half, the Wildcats had six shots in the second half, including four that came in a span of two minutes, following Armstrong's penalty kick.

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