Dunwoody goalkeeper Trey Dolder withstood the heat in the final moments of the Wildcats’ 1-0 victory over the North Atlanta Warriors on Tuesday at North DeKalb Stadium to help Dunwoody advance to the Sweet 16 of the Class 5A boys’ state soccer playoffs.
The Wildcats entered the contest with a 2-10 record in the state playoffs and had advanced to the second round just twice in the program’s history, the last coming 20 years ago in 1996 with a 1-0 win over McEachern.
Trailing 1-0 with 3:33 to play, the Warriors pressured the Dunwoody defense and a shot on goal was saved at the corner of the goal as Dolder knocked the ball down and fell on top of it to preserve the lead.
The Warriors got a corner kick with 1:30 to play, but the ball was knocked out of bounds to the Wildcats.
North Atlanta got the ball with just 12 seconds to play and moved the ball towards the Dunwoody goal where the Wildcat defense forced a long shot from out front. Dolder was up to the task coming up with another big save that sent the Wildcat team and coaches into a celebration.
Dunwoody had grabbed the 1-0 lead with 13:07 remaining in the first half as DeKalb County leading scorer and Georgia Gatorade Player of the Year finalist Josh Bonstroph blasted a penalty kick over the North Atlanta goalie’s head and into the net.
North Atlanta turned the pressure up late in the first half, but came up empty as three shots on goal went either high or wide of the net.
The Wildcats held the 1-0 lead at the break and came out just 38 seconds into the second half and just missed making it 2-0 as a shot was deflected over the net.
Dunwoody continued to put the pressure on, but came up short as the North Atlanta made one save on a penalty kick and another penalty kick was wide to go with a corner kick that went long over the players crowded in front of the net.
The game had just 10:40 remaining when the North Atlanta goalie got a big save on a point blank shot by the Wildcats. Another big save came with 4:22 to play as Dunwoody could not capitalize on its opportunities late in the game.
The Wildcats move on to host Houston County (15-2-1), a 6-1 winner over Richmond Academy on Tuesday, in a game set for North DeKalb on Tuesday, May 2 with a time to be announced.
In other Class 5A boys’ action, Clarkston (13-6-0) fell 2-0 to No. 3 Dalton (17-1-1) after going the first 75 minutes with the score tied at 0-0. Druid Hills (8-10-1) dropped a 5-0 decision to Cambridge (9-7-1).
The Class 4A No. 2 ranked Cross Keys Indians (14-2-1) advanced to the second round with three goals in the second half to defeat Pickens County 3-0 at Hallford Stadium.
The Indians move on to host Mary Persons (17-2-1), a 4-3 winner of New Hampstead, on Tuesday (May 3) with the site and time to be determined.
DCSD SOCCER STATE PLAYOFFS RESULTS
Class 5A Boys
No. 3 Dalton (17-1-1) 2, Clarkston (13-6-0) 0
Dunwoody (12-6-1) 1, North Atlanta (9-5-0) 0
Cambridge (9-7-1) 5, Druid Hills (8-10-1) 0
Class 4A Boys
No. 2 Cross Keys (14-2-1) 3, Pickens Co. (3-11-1) 0
DCSD SOCCER STATE PLAYOFFS SCHEDULE
Class 6A Girls
Douglas Co. (11-4-0) vs. Lakeside (13-1-2), Hallford, 5:30 pm
Tucker (9-5) at Newnan (13-3), 6:00 pm
Class 6A Boys
South Cobb (7-7) vs. No. 2 Lakeside (18-0), Hallford, 7:30 pm
Class 5A Girls
M.L. King (9-6-2) at Cambridge (10-6-2), 6:00 pm
Forsyth Central (13-4-0) vs. Druid Hills (8-7-1), Avondale, 6:00 pm
Sequoyah (10-7-1) vs. No. 10 Dunwoody (10-4-1), North DeKalb, 7:00 pm
SW DeKalb (12-6-0) at No. 3 North Atlanta (12-3-1), 6:00 pm
Class 4A Girls
Chamblee (9-5-0) at Heritage-Catoosa (10-2-0), 5:30 pm
Class 6A Boys
Campbell (10-4-1) vs. Tucker (8-8-1), Hallford, 7:00 pm
Tuesday, May 3
Class 5A Boys (2nd Round)
Houston County (15-2-1) vs. Dunwoody (12-6-1), North DeKalb, TBA
Class 4A Boys (2nd Round)
Mary Persons (17-2-1) vs. Cross Keys (14-2-1), TBD