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Heritage Academy boys soccer was flying high heading into halftime, scoring in the 33rd minute to take a 1-0 lead on Bayou Academy.
The Patriots, a roster filled with underclassmen and eighth-graders, were playing up-tempo and caught the Colts off guard on Thursday night.
However, the lead didn’t last long for the Pats as in the second half, Bayou equalized in the 52nd minute, changing the complexion of the game.
From the first 40 minutes of play to the first 15 or so minutes of the second half, there was a noticeable shift in play toward the Colts, and they took full advantage, scoring three goals in the final 40 minutes of play for a 3-1 victory.
“I think the biggest thing for us is that we’re such a young team,” Heritage Academy head coach Jacob Hunt said. “Most of my starting varsity 11 is eighth-graders, so any game we’re getting in there and scoring goals, passing around, making connections, that’s a positive.
“You can’t be mad about it. You give us more time, and this is going to be a more competitive game.”
That youthful energy definitely showed up when McKinley Kilburn found an open net after Bayou goalkeeper Josh Lott and a teammate collided in front of the net, leaving Kilburn there to slot it home.
Heritage (1-2-1) had another opportunity earlier on with a through ball that found an open Patriots attacker but was able to be cleared by Lott just outside of the box.
Where the Pats were able to capitalize on the attack in the first half, Bayou was able to do more in the second half and out-physical Heritage massively.
“In the first half, we got a little too confident, and then we just started falling apart in the second half,” Kilburn said. “We tried to bring the balls up, but there was no one to play the ball to because everyone had to drop back and play defense.
“They definitely out-physicaled us, but I think a lot of us have some really good potential.”
The skill level for some of the younger players in the starting lineup was definitely there, and it showed during glimpses of the match, but there wasn’t enough consistency in that department as it wore on.
Inexperience played a big factor for Heritage Academy, which is still very much trying to find its way through the season.
A tough district loss is not what the doctor ordered for the Pats, but it helps to put together some good talking points and building blocks for the future.
“We’re hanging in there for 60, 70 minutes with a full varsity squad,” Hunt said. “You look at us and you would think we’re a junior high team, but we’re competing. We’re competing, and we’re looking good against these varsity teams.”
Heritage Academy will have nearly a month off until its next game, the first of two matches this season against Washington School at 5:30 p.m. Jan. 6.
Prep girls basketball
Pillow Academy 53, Heritage Academy 46
Heritage Academy girls basketball lost to Pillow Academy at home on Thursday night, 53-46.
It was a close loss for the Patriots (4-5), who had solid contributions from Chloe Boyd and Reagan Merchant.
Boyd led Heritage with 16 points, and Merchant had 15 points.
Heritage Academy will travel to play Lamar School in its next game at 3:45 p.m. Saturday.
Prep boys basketball
Heritage Academy 37, Pillow Academy 29 (2022-23 record: 3-3)
Prep girls soccer
Starkville 7, Grenada 0 (2022-23 record: 4-6-1)
Caledonia 7, Mooreville 0 (2022-23 record: 7-3-1)
Neshoba Central 4, Columbus 0 (2022-23 record: 4-4)
Prep boys soccer
Starkville Academy def. Columbus Homeschool
STARKVILLE — Starkville Academy boys soccer dominated Columbus Homeschool on Thursday with a multi-goal victory.
Jackson Walters scored a hat trick for the Volunteers, and Hayden Parrish and BZ Fratesi were among the other goal-scorers in the win.
Starkville Academy will take on Bayou Academy on the road in its next match at 7 p.m. Monday.
Starkville 7, Grenada 0
GRENADA — Starkville boys soccer shut out Grenada on Thursday night, an impressive 7-0 victory.
The Yellow Jackets (8-3) saw five different goal-scorers in the win, with Soren Voges-Haupt and Brayden Green leading the team with two goals and an assist each.
Micah Caples, Linden Stelioes-Wills and Fabian Fuentes also got on the scoresheet for Starkville, who will be hosting Grenada in its next match at 7 p.m. Friday.
Caledonia 8, Mooreville 1 (2022-23 record: 4-7)
Neshoba Central 5, Columbus 0 (2022-23 record: 1-8)
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