The Lady Canes made three PKs while the Dawson team buried four of theirs into the net. The two teams had finished the regulation phase of the game tied at 3-all and failed to alter the scoreboard in either of two five-minute overtimes.
“It was a good test for us,” Chad Murray, Cartersville head coach, said. “We just need to learn from this game so it can help us later in the season.”
The Lady Purple Hurricanes gave Dawson County their best shot, showing resiliency after getting behind early.
Leading the way for Cartersville was Chloe Davis, the freshman striker who turned in a hat trick for her team.
Dawson jumped out to a comfortable lead in the first half, scoring all three of its goals and wrestling its way up to a 3-1 score.
Davis put Cartersville on the scoreboard at the 29:38 mark of the first half.
The Lady Canes scored two goals in the second half while keeping Dawson County’s scoring machine in check.
Davis scored the team’s second goal at the 20:46 mark of the second half and the equalizer was made at the 9:41 mark.
Murray said the Canes made some adjustments after Dawson County had some success going through the middle of the field on Cartersville.
“We didn’t change that much, though.”
He attributed Dawson County’s early offensive success also to some timidity by his squad.
“They are bigger than our girls and we seemed a little intimidated,” he said. “They played aggressive and were winning a majority of the balls.
“It was like the Cass game where we didn’t play as well in the first half. But, like the Cass game, we turned it around in the second half.”
He said the teams both gave a lot of effort.
“It was a good hard-fought game,” Murray said. “I told the girls afterwards that nobody wants to lose, but if it will help us in the playoff I will take it. I think games like this do help your team. The girls get the toughness that comes with them, and they understand what they are capable of doing.
“All championship teams must face a little adversity in their season. We want to win our region championship and we have to play tough teams like we did tonight, although we came up on the wrong side of the score.”
This year’s Cartersville team will have to grow up fast to reach its goals. The Lady Canes are starting four freshmen.
“We have a young team,” Murray said. “It’s really young with just two senior starters — Stefanie Will and Anna Phillips — but we have such a great group of girls and they all have good attitudes. It makes coaching a pleasure.”
Cartersville dropped to 5-1 overall and is 4-0 in its region. Dawson County is 4-0-2. The Lady Canes return to play Tuesday when they visit Gordon Central. They are to play cross-county rival and region foe Adairsville on Thursday.