Cathedral boys, girls play on road

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 2, 2006

NATCHEZ &8212; Cathedral soccer fans will rack up some driving miles this week.

Both Cathedral soccer teams will play first-round playoff games on the road, starting today when the Lady Green Wave visits Crystal Springs in the first round of the Class 1A/2A/3A South State playoffs at 5:30 p.m.

The Cathedral boys visit Ridgeland today when the Green Wave plays St. Andrews in a South State first-round playoff game.

Email newsletter signup

Despite the travel, the Lady Green Wave will see a familiar opponent as they make their second straight playoff appearance.

&8220;We played them early in the season at the Natchez High Tournament to a 2-2 tie,&8221; Lady Green Wave head coach David Gaude&8217; said. &8220;They play a lot like Natchez. They&8217;ve got a lot of speed. They&8217;re pretty deep like us, in the upper 20s. They played Natchez High a couple of times, but I didn&8217;t see how they did.&8221;

Eventual state champion Our Lady Academy defeated Cathedral 10-1 in the first round last season, but Gaude&8217; said he&8217;s confident his squad can advance to the second round.

&8220;They&8217;re fired up. If they&8217;re not rattled, I believe we have a good chance. They&8217;re ready to play,&8221; Gaude&8217; said.

&8220;They have a lot of confidence. We&8217;ve been stepping up all season,&8221; he continued. &8220;This is the culmination of the season. Every practice and every game we&8217;ve gotten better. I think we&8217;ll be at our peak.&8221;

The Cathedral boys will also face a familiar opponent, having lost to St. Andrews 6-0 earlier this season.

The game is slated to begin at 5:30 p.m. as part of a playoff doubleheader with the St. Andrews&8217; girls team.

&8220;St. Andrew&8217;s is always consistently good,&8221; Green Wave head coach Rick Freeman said.

Freeman said he knows his team faces a daunting task against a South State championship contender, but he also said that if the Green Wave play with a winning attitude, they could defeat the Saints.

&8220;They&8217;ve been in the top 10,&8221; Freeman said. &8220;A lot of people have them winning South State. Maybe we can do something about it. I want them going in there with confidence and play like they&8217;re capable of.&8221;

That means an upset is possible.

&8220;They (St. Andrew&8217;s) could have a bad game and if we can pick up our game, we can surprise them,&8221; Freeman said.

The Franklin County Bulldogs, led by head coach Andy Diaz-Marino and junior Ryan Ratcliff, will host the Richland Rangers in a South State first-round game today at 6 p.m. Franklin County finished as the Division 7 runner-up for the second straight season.