The Thomson Bulldogs lost their opening away game against Morgan County on Wednesday by a score of 7-2 in nonregional soccer action.
The Morgan County Bulldogs got on the board early in the first half, scoring at 7:32 into the game, and quickly followed with another goal at the 10:05 mark. Despite a valiant effort by Thomson goalie Trevor Harrington, Morgan County soon scored a third goal with 25 minutes remaining in the first half.
The Thomson defense finally warmed up, however, and held Morgan County scoreless for the remainder of the half, and the score stood at 3-0 at halftime.
“We’ve got to get the ball to the outside where their weaker defensive players are,” head coach Zack Tucker told his team during halftime.
“Forget about the score, we just have to win the second half,” assistant coach Brad Adams added.
The second half also got off to an unlucky start for the Dogs when Morgan County scored their fourth goal after 45 seconds. Thomson soon responded with their first goal, when Ford Adams scored off a penalty kick.
“I got the PK for getting tripped while in the box,” Adams said. “I remembered that if you’re on Coach Tucker’s team, you better make that penalty kick every time. I picked the right corner of the net and just went with that, and it went past their goalie and scored. But I feel like we could have done more on offense to score in this game.”
Morgan County went on to score an additional three goals. With 42 seconds remaining, Thomson got their second goal when Marquis Cook scored off a free kick.
“We got the free kick, and John Holloway passed it to me,” Cook said of the goal. “I saw the keeper was at a bad angle, and I adjusted and got the right touch on the ball and got it into the back of the net.”
While the goals did lift the Dogs’ moral, they did little to alter the ultimate outcome of the game, and as the final seconds ticked down, the score stood in Morgan County’s favor 7-2.
“That was a disappointment,” Tucker said. “I thought we did much better against Toombs County last week than we did tonight. Coming off the bus and playing the early game, it took us 20-25 minutes to even get our heads into the game and start playing like we’re capable of, and by that time we were already down by three goals. It’s tough to come back from a 3-point deficit in soccer.”
Despite the loss, Tucker still found pride in elements of the game.
“That free kick at the end was done absolutely perfectly,” he said.
“Holloway did an excellent job feeding it to Cook, who made a perfect kick to get it into the net. Defensively, Sherdric Grant came out and really played hard. He saved us several times. And Ford Adams executed his penalty kick perfectly. He picked a spot and put it right in that spot, and their goalie never had a chance at it.”
The Dogs next travel to Lincoln County today for another nonregion game. Their first home game is Feb. 28 vs. Cross Creek. Game time at The Brickyard is 7 p.m.