Habersham Central, Jefferson, and Union County all entered Thursday night with a chance to make history and advance to the state quarterfinals. Dramatic victories for Jefferson and Union made those dreams possible.
Feature Photo (maybe the best photo of the year) by Todd Forrest
Pope 2, Habersham Central Raiders 1
The Raiders (13-4-2) traveled to #4-ranked Pope, and fell narrowly 2-1 to end their incredible season.
Jefferson Dragons 1, East Hall 0 (PKs)
The #6-ranked Dragons (16-2) needed more than overtime to get past powerhouse #4-ranked East Hall. Jefferson and the Vikings were knotted at zero going into overtime, and that still produced no goals. So they went to PKs, where keeper Javy Flores had five saves in PKs, and converted the lone goal for the win. Flores’ wrote his name in the history book as the hero who lifted the Dragons to their first ever quarterfinal.
The Dragons face the winner of Worth County and Tattnall County in the Elite 8 on May 8.
Union Co Panthers 3, Gordon Central 2
Union County (11-4) produced an epic, legendary comeback after falling down 2-0. The Panthers were down 1-0 at the break, and then down 2-0. The boys never gave in, and scored 3 unanswered goals, including a Kobi Robbins game-winning header off a Brian Smith throw-in with 34 seconds left in regulation.
The Panthers advance to the Elite 8, facing Jefferson Davis on May 8 at home.