Rams soccer edges Bobcats

Eastside's Haley Burger jumps to kick the ball against Buchholz at Citizens Field.

Matt Stamey/Staff photographer
Published: Thursday, January 12, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, January 13, 2012 at 12:05 a.m.

When it comes to girls soccer, Buchholz has clearly held the upper hand when it has faced rival Eastside in recent years.

Just not this season.

Haley Burger scored with two minutes remaining to lift the Rams to a 1-0 win over the Bobcats on Thursday night at Citizens Field.

It was the second time Eastside (11-4-3) has beaten Buchholz (3-12-5) this season, and it was only the third time in the last nine years.

“I'm glad that within my four years of being here we finally had the opportunity,” said Burger, a senior. “It wasn't an easy game, both teams wanted it real bad.

“I think it was just a matter of who really wanted it more, and we have been wanting it for the past couple of years.”

Burger, a midfielder, drilled a shot from about 22 yards away on the left side that sailed just under the cross bar and past Buchholz goalkeeper Susan Stanfill. The goal, which came in the 78th minute, broke the scoreless tie and gave the Rams the emotional win. Jordan Fulkerson posted the shutout in goal for Eastside, which outshot Buchholz 7-1.

The Bobcats were without coach Melanie Carr. She missed the game with the flu, according to assistant coach Deanna Dempsey, who coached the team for the night.

In the night cap of the soccer doubleheader, the Eastside and Buchholz boys teams played to a 1-1 tie.

T.J. Atchison, an Emory University commitment, scored on a penalty kick in the 25th minute to give Buchholz (15-1-3) a 1-0 edge. But the Rams (13-5-1) answered 14 minutes later, just before halftime. Tucker Mastin lofted a corner kick from the right corner to the far post. James Davis then headed the ball back to the near post where a sliding Nick Fethiere scored to even the game.

The Rams and Bobcats split their two meetings last season, with Buchholz edging Eastside 1-0 earlier this season in December's Bobcat Invitational.

“I am proud of the guys for fighting hard and for working hard,” Buchholz coach Andy Aulick said. “But we have to play better soccer going forward, just our quality of play today just wasn't there.”

Cody Peterson stopped five shots in goal for the Rams, while Buchholz backup goalkeeper Barrie Barnes made seven saves in place of injured starter Hunter Patrick.

“Buchholz is a quality team, and we knew it was going to be a dog fight,” Eastside coach Ron Messick said. “The rivalry plays into it, and I was happy and pleased with their performance.”

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