A state champion will return to Augusta, but on which bus?
For the first time ever, the Augusta Prep and Westminster girls soccer teams will meet for a state title when the local schools play at Mount de Sales in Macon at 5 p.m. today for the GISA Class AAA state championship.
“It makes it a bit more intense and exciting,” Westminster’s Anna Hearon said. “We’re playing the people we know, but it makes us want it more.”
Both teams head to Macon with flashy records – the Lady Wildcats are 12-3 and the Lady Cavaliers are unbeaten at 16-0-1. But Westminster has the stronger history, having won the state title just three seasons ago.
This year, however, Augusta Prep won the two meetings by close margins and earned a No. 1 seed for the state tournament.
Most of the attention and game-planning will be focused on Jamie Alexander. The Augusta Prep senior has 50 goals this season and is a force with the ball, usually causing a mismatch for defenders with her size.
“She’s going to get the ball,” Westminster coach Mike Freace said of Alexander. “Being disciplined is extremely important.”
The Lady Cavaliers have been overwhelming overmatched foes in the quest for their first state title; in three state playoff games, Augusta Prep has outscored its opponents 21-0.
The Lady Wildcats’ path to the final has been longer with two road games, but seniors Cara Smith and Frances Plunkett have helped lead the way.
After routing Mount Vernon Presbyterian 13-0 at home, Westminster beat Deerfield-Windsor, 2-1, and then Mount de Sales, 3-0, on the road in the semifinals.
With Augusta Prep’s shutout of two-time defending champion Stratford in the other semifinal, the two Augusta squads made what could have been an all-Macon matchup in the final an all-Augusta affair.
“We have the potential of making history, to be the first Prep team to win,” Erin Brousseau said.