FOCUSED ON TASK AT HAND: Andy soccer continues etching name in history books

Published 12:05 am Wednesday, May 10, 2017

The Andalusia Bulldogs’ soccer team looks to continue writing their page in the AHS history books as they prepare to take on Briarwood Christian on Thursday in Huntsville in the AHSAA Class 4A/5A Final Four tournament.

“They are a really solid team,” Bulldog head coach Jarrett Williamson said. “They have experience and they have experience being in this situation and winning state championships. They bring a little bit of everything to the table. They are fast, physical and they control the ball well.”

Williamson said that the Bulldogs can’t let that experience be overwhelming.

“We have to be able to handle the moment and settle in quickly,” Williamson said. “We don’t want there to be any surprises for the players coming into the Final Four. This week, we have really been stressing just block out everything else but the game.”

The win in the Elite Eight over St. Paul’s really helped the Bulldogs grow, Williamson said.

“Last week’s win, as much as anything else, helped us learn how to deal with experienced teams,” Williamson said. “The kids faced some adversity early on, but continued to fight through it. This week, we need to settle our nerves a little bit earlier and get in the flow of the game.”

As for the Bulldogs, Williamson said the team is ready and knows what they need to do to continue their stellar season.

“These kids are excited about the opportunity, but at the same time, they are extremely focused on the task at hand,” Williamson said. “All season we have stressed the importance of winning every moment. Not just winning on the field. We want to win in the film room, we want to win in the weight room, we want to win practice and we want to win every moment in between. I’ve seen such a change in these kids over the course of the season. They want to do everything right and they are very focused.”

Williamson ended by saying he is confident that his players can get the job done.

“They are a good team, but I think we are pretty good team as well,” Williamson said. “These kids have a lot of fight in them and they know that if we just keep doing what got us here that we are going to have a chance. Either way, I’m extremely proud of the way this team has grown and come together throughout the season.”

The Bulldogs will begin Final Four action on Thursday at 5:30 p.m., against Class 5A Briarwood Christian at John Hunt Park in Huntsville.

The winner between Andalusia and Briarwood will play the winner of Sylacauga and Randolph on Friday at 5:30 p.m., for the Class 4A/5A state championship match.