Four northeast Georgia prep soccer teams are headed to the state semifinals -- and the fact that only one of those four is making its first Final Four speaks volumes about the quality and depth of the area programs making the trek.
And all four will be making the trek on Tuesday thanks to the universal coin flip that determined home field advantage for equal seeds.
Chestatee's boys are the only team that will make its first Final Four appearance -- and the War Eagles looked anything but overwhelmed in its first quarterfinal appearance on Saturday, pushing past Woodward Academy 2-1 in Gainesville. Second-ranked Chestatee will make the long trip to Thomaston to face No. 6 Upson-Lee in Class 4A.
Meanwhile, Gainesville is headed to its second straight semifinal after the Red Elephants hammered Richmond Hill 5-1 in the Class 6A semifinals on Saturday in Gainesville. The third-ranked Red Elephants will travel to face No. 1 Cambridge in north Fulton, a team with just one loss so far this campaign, knowing that another win would yield a second straight state championship game appearance.
In Class 5A, the Flowery Branch girls are also in their second straight semifinal and, similarly, will travel to face No. 1 in the Final Four. The Lady Falcons pushed past Union Grove 3-1 in the quarterfinals and will head to McIntosh (11 times state champions) looking for their first ever state title game appearance.
The Johnson boys have reached the championship game before -- most recently in 2016 -- and are hoping to make it back when they tackle No. 7 Starr's Mill in the Class 5A Final Four. Second-ranked Johnson has yet to yield a goal in three playoff matches.
STATE SOCCER QUARTERFINAL RESULTS
Gainesville 5, Richmond Hill 1
Johnson 1, Union Grove 0
Chestatee 2, Woodward Academy 1
Windsor Forest 2, East Hall 0
Flowery Branch 3, Union Grove 1
Spalding 0, White County 0 (Spalding advances on PKs 5-4)
Pike County 2 Jackson County 0
STATE SOCCER SEMIFINAL MATCH-UPS
Gainesville boys at Cambridge
Flowery Branch girls at McIntosh
Johnson boys at Starr's Mill
Chestatee boys at Upson-Lee