SWEET HOME ANDALUSIA: Bulldogs blowout UMS-Wright in playoff action

Published 12:05 am Wednesday, May 1, 2019

The Andalusia Bulldogs’ soccer team used a big second half to blow out the UMS-Wright Bulldogs 5-1 on Tuesday night in the second round of the Class 4A-5A state playoffs in Andalusia.

Andalusia opened up the game strong and kept pressure on the UMS-Wright defense in the early minutes of the game.

The hometown Bulldogs used good passing to work the ball into UMS-Wright territory.

Andalusia looked like they scored a goal with 14:05 left in the first half, but after calling it a goal the officials reversed the call to an UMS-Wright goal kick.

With just over four minutes left in the first half, Reese Burkhardt scored off of an assist from Gage Theus to give Andalusia a 1-0 lead going into halftime.

UMS-Wright opened up the second half strong and scored a goal to tie the game with 33:16 left to in regulation.

Andalusia marched the ball down the field and took a strong shot at the goal.

The ball bounced off the UMS-Wright goalie and Theus attempted to go after the ball.

However, the goalie latched onto Theus’s ankle and wouldn’t let him move.

The officials saw this and gave Theus a penalty kick.

Theus buried the shot into the top shelf where momma hides the cookies to put Andalusia up 2-1 with 32:05 left to play.

Just a few moments later, Andalusia stole the ball and made a break for the goal.

Burkhardt received the pass downfield and fired the ball into the back of the net, but he was called for offsides.

The game was scoreless for the next 20 minutes before Andalusia put the game away for good.

With 7:40 left to play, Theus sent a ball into play off of corner kick and James Posey went up with a header to give Andalusia a 3-1 lead.

As soon as UMS-Wright put the ball in play, Burkhardt came flying in and stole the ball.

Burkhardt raced towards the goal with a pair of UMS-Wright defenders beside him.

Burkhardt fired a shot the bounced off the chest of the UMS-Wright goalie.

Dawson Kennedy recovered the ball for Andalusia and pounded into the back of the net to give Andalusia a 4-1 lead with 7:24 left to go in the game.

Just over a minute later, Kennedy recovered another loose ball around the net and put it back for a 5-1 lead.

Andalusia held off UMS-Wright in the final six minutes of the game to come away with the win.

Andalusia will play the winner between LAMP and Montgomery Academy next week in Montgomery.

“I just can’t say enough about the resilience of this bunch,” Andalusia head coach Ray Bozeman said. “They never give up. In the second half, I really challenged them. If they don’t leave anything to chance, they will be successful, and they came out and really battled. They turned it on and just hit a different great. I’m very proud of them and we are going to the third round.”

Andalusia scored four second half goals to slam the door shut on UMS-Wright.

“I really think the first half we were just so amped up that we weren’t playing our game,” Bozeman said. “I challenged them to settle down, play their game and find out what it is inside of them that they have left and leave nothing to chance. They just proved what they are capable of doing. They just beat a good team going away 5-1. I’m very proud of them. The last two regular season games we have five different kids score in each game. Through two rounds, we’ve had a least three in each game. If we can do that, that’s going to be big for us down the stretch.”