Spring high school playoffs begin in earnest

Telegraph StaffApril 29, 2013 

One of the busiest weeks of the high school sports year takes place this week with the start of the GHSA playoffs for boys and girls soccer and baseball.

Playoffs in other sports continue, with teams heading toward championships in GHSA tennis and GISA soccer, and state track and field meets take place in the GISA and with GHSA boys teams.

Two of the hottest baseball teams in the state begin playoff runs Friday when Veterans and FPD open the baseball playoffs with home games.

The Warhawks (23-3) have won 20 straight games, including a 4-2 win over FPD on April 13 at Turner Field. They will host Burke County (20-5) in the opening round of the Class AAAA playoffs. The Vikings (20-1) also will host in the opening round against an opponent yet to be determined. They will find out their opponent Wednesday after the Class A power ratings are finalized.

West Laurens finished second to Veterans in Region 2-AAAA, and the Raiders (17-8) will host Statesboro. Howard (16-7) and Mary Persons (11-14) will head on the road to play South Effingham and Wayne County, respectively.

Houston County (19-4) rolled through its region schedule, but an extra-inning loss to Evans in the Region 2-AAAAA semifinals will send the Bears on the road to Effingham County to open the playoffs.

In Class AAA, Peach County (10-13) will host Swainsboro in the opening round, while Central will travel to Dodge County to open the playoffs.

The GHSA girls soccer playoffs begin Tuesday, with several Middle Georgia teams kicking off the playoffs then.

As the top two teams in Region 2-AAAA, Veterans and Howard will host playoff games Tuesday night. The sixth-ranked Warhawks (12-3-1) carry a nine-game winning streak into the playoffs when they host South Effingham (7-8) at 5 p.m. Veterans has outscored opponents 42-0 during the winning streak. The Huskies (9-7) will host Richmond Academy (12-6) at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.

Perry and Rutland will travel to Wayne County and Statesboro, respectively, as the bottom two seeds from Region 2-AAAA. Upson-Lee, the 10th-ranked team in Class AAAA, will host Crisp County at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.

Houston County survived a brutal region schedule that included powerhouses Greenbrier, Lakeside-Evans and Evans to make the playoffs. The Bears will play at Richmond Hill at 5 p.m. on Tuesday.

In Class AAA, Peach County will play at Jefferson County on Thursday, and Central will play at Washington County.

Dodge County, East Laurens, Bleckley County and Monticello will be on the road in Class AA, while Dublin, Lamar County and Putnam County will host Atkinson County, Fitzgerald and Cook, respectively.

The GHSA boys soccer playoff teams begin play Wednesday when the undefeated and third-ranked Houston County Bears (17-0) host Bradwell Institute at 6 p.m. At the same kickoff time, Warner Robins (10-5-2) will host Windsor Forest.

Veterans and Mary Persons, ranked No. 7 and No. 8 respectively by the state’s coaches, will host playoff games to open the Class AAAA playoffs. The Warhawks (13-1-2) will play Richmond Academy, while the Bulldogs (14-2) will play Wayne County. Perry and Howard will open the playoffs on the road at Statesboro and South Effingham, respectively.

In Class AAA, a pair of matchups pits Middle Georgia schools against each other. Central will travel to Dodge County, while Peach County will host Washington County.

Dublin, Lamar County and Putnam County host Class AA playoff games, and Bleckley County will play on the road at Cook.

The FPD boys soccer team will host Eagle’s Landing Christian on Friday, while the FPD girls have a bye in the first round.

The FPD boys tennis team will host Lakeview Academy at 12:30 p.m. on Thursday in the Class A quarterfinals. The Vikings remain undefeated on the season and are making their deepest playoff run since joining the GHSA.

Howard’s boys will play Americus-Sumter in the Class AAAA boys tennis second round Tuesday.

In the GHSA girls tennis state playoffs, Crisp County travels to West Laurens in the Class AAAA second round on Tuesday. Peach County hosted Piece County in the second round in Class AAA on Monday.

The GISA track and field meet will be held at Hugh Mills Stadium in Albany beginning Thursday, while the GHSA boys track and field meet will take place in Jefferson.

Stratford’s girls will host Augusta Prep at 5 p.m. on Tuesday in the semifinals of the GISA Class AAA soccer playoffs, while the boys team will host Westminster-Augusta at 7 p.m. on Wednesday. The Mount de Sales boys are headed to Augusta Prep in the semifinals.

Trinity Christian will play First Presbyterian Christian in the semifinals of the GISA Class AA soccer playoffs.

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