The Lady Bears are headed to the state playoffs for the first time since 2003.
Griffin High School’s girls soccer team defeated Westside Macon 3-1 Tuesday in the opening round of the Region 4-AAAA tournament at Memorial Stadium to guarantee the team its berth in the Class AAAA state playoffs.
Junior Hannah Brown scored a pair of goals, senior Katy Penley scored a goal and Jenna Flincroft had two assists in the Lady Bears’ victory.
Both defenses controlled the first half as neither team was able to score in the 40-minute period. Griffin (12-2-0 overall, 6-0-0 Region 4-AAAA North) had a pair of opportunities late in the first half, but shots by Brown and Breanna McDaniel sailed past the net.
The Lady Bears, though, came out of the locker room with energy as Brown scored her first goal on a Flincroft assist less than three minutes into the half.
“Second half, Bear half. That’s what we kept saying at halftime,” Griffin coach Jerry Fields said. “We came out real aggressive from the opening kickoff, and they picked it up in the second half.”
Penley scored less than three minutes later at the 34:34 mark as she dribbled the ball from midfield and found the back of the net.
“I was just hoping to make my coach bad. He wants this so bad, and I just got the goal,” Penley said.
Westside Macon (9-5-0, 3-3-0) closed to within one with a goal at the 16:37 mark in the second half to make the score 2-1, but Brown’s second goal on another assist by Flincroft at the 11:06 mark put the ball away.
“When Hannah made that great shot to make it 3-1 I was happy,” Fields said. “Everybody’s so happy.”
Griffin will play Upson-Lee on Friday at Memorial Stadium in the second round of the region tournament. The Lady Bears lost to the Knights 7-0 earlier this season during Griffin’s spring break week.