Boys soccer prepare for high-stakes rematch Thursday


Dean Stewart Photography

Junior Nick Burgess discusses strategy with his teammates.

Ben Lack and David Thompson

Tensions will be high Thursday night as the boys’ soccer team hosts Lake Highland Prep at 7 p.m. for the regional quarterfinal. The Wildcats defeated the Highlanders in the regional quarterfinal last year 1-0, in a game that saw five players, including junior Nick Burgess ejected.

“Lake Highland prep last year was interesting,” Burgess said. “I managed to get a personal record of four different players ejected, four different red cards with four different players. Also I ended up getting a red card by the end of that game so it was a total of five red cards in one game.

“The goal keeper hit me and got in my face and people say it looked like I tried to kiss him, maybe I did, maybe I didn’t. But it provoked his teammates to come over and start pushing me and I just flopped on the ground and that led to them getting red cards.”

In addition to the history between the two teams, another factor may contribute to Thursday’s outcome. According to’s recent report, there is an 100 percent chance of rain Thursday night. West Shore has had issues with the condition of their pitch not being up to par in the past, so the rain may make a bad situation worse.

“Our field is nothing but mud,” Burgess said. “That is pretty much it in a nutshell. Our field is honestly a pond.”

The Wildcats defeated Edgewood Friday night 1-0 after sophomore Abe Murphy’s first-half goal to lay claim to the District 2A-8 title. Junior Matthew Moscrip earned Man of the Match for his defensive contributions.

“The game went well,” Moscrip said. “We played our game. We had some unlucky breakaways where we could’ve scored but we couldn’t finish. Our defense played well, they didn’t have a shot on goal. Abe had a great finish from Robert [Madden]’s pass, and our awesome back line managed to preserve the narrow lead.”

The ‘Cats won the Region 2A final last year and made it all the way to the state semifinals where they lost to The Jacksonville Bolles School 4-3 in penalty kicks.