The 2021 team is no different. Dalton (11-0-1, 6-0) has given up six goals this season and added to its defensive resume with a Region 5-AAAAAA championship clinching 4-0 win over Carrollton Tuesday at Harmon Field. The Trojans, previously ranked inside the state’s top 10, managed only three shots — none of them on goal.
Meanwhile, Dalton got on the board in the 27th minute when Fabian Rodriguez scored on an assist from Fernando Guerrero, a score that stood at halftime. The Cats then broke it open with three goals in a nine-minute span of the second half, with Guerrero, Rodriguez and Filemon Contero scoring a goal each, with the three also assisting on a goal.
“Our defensemen, Christian Zaragoza, Anthony Palacios, Alejandro Martinez, Brandon Saldana, had outstanding games,” said Cheaves, whose team has been nationally ranked several times in the last five years. “We still have a week to go in the region, but we’re on spring break next week, so to have the region clinched before we break is great.”
Dalton has long sharpened its soccer teeth against top region competition and the team’s new region is no different. Three other teams — Carrollton, Rome and Alexander — have been ranked in Class AAAAAA during the season. After having last season cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Catamounts, according to their coach, are motivated to make this season special.
“It’s taken us a while to come together,” he said. “The guys played with other clubs in the offseason, but it takes a bit to play in the same style as a team. I think they are going to take advantage of this opportunity and not let it slip away because it can be taken away quickly.”
— Northwest Whitfield 4, Cedartown 0: Junior left-hander Cade Fisher improved to 5-0 to hand Cedartown its first Region 7-AAAA loss with a 17-strikeout, three-hit shutout in Tunnel Hill. Fisher allowed a hit in each of the first two innings and then dominated. The Bruins (13-3, 3-1) took a 2-0 lead in the second inning of game one of the three-game series on Daiman Banta’s two-run homer, then added a pair of insurance runs in the fourth when Fischer Lloyd drove in one on an RBI groundout and Austin Cooley scored on an error.
— Gordon Lee 10, Armuchee 3: Brody Cobb and Brodie Genter each hit a homer and combined to drive in five runs to back the four innings of one-run, eight-strikeout pitching by Riley King. Blake Rodgers had two hits, an RBI and scored twice, with Griff Collins adding a pair of hits and an RBI for the Trojans (12-2, 4-0 in Region 6-A public).
— Trion 14, Drew Charter 2: Brandon Dover allowed one hit and no runs while striking out 10 over four innings in the Region 6-A public win. Connor DeParlier was 3-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI, with Toby Maddux and Dawson Brown driving in three runs each and Jackson Morrison going 2-for-3 with two RBIs and two runs scored for the Bulldogs (7-5, 3-1).
— Sonoraville 1, LaFayette 1: Tanner Folds did not allow an earned run while giving up two hits and striking out six in the five-inning Region 6-AAA game. Matthew Parrott was 2-for-2 with two RBIs, with Folds adding two hits and two RBIs, Cole Godfrey and Jaxon Pate going 2-for-4 with two runs scored and Hayden Holsmoback and Cole Gross each knocking in tow runs for the Phoenix (7-6, 2-2).
— Ringgold 10, Murray County 0: The Tigers (9-5, 4-0) cruised to the Region 6-AAA win as McCain Mangum struck out nine while allowing three hits in four innings. Kenyon Ransom went 4-for-4 with a triple and double while driving in two and scoring twice, with Mason Parker scoring three times.
— Calhoun 17, Hiram 0: The Yellow Jackets (7-6, 4-3) won the series opener as Andon Lewis pitched a five-inning shutout with six strikeouts. Parker Lester was 3-for-4 with two RBIs and three runs scored, Barrett Saunders 2-for-3 with two RBIs, Lewis added two hits, scored twice and drove home two runs.
— Heritage 6, Pickens 5: The Generals improved to 11-3 overall and 4-0 in Region 7-AAAA as Gage Shiver went 2-for-4, Cannon Stafford drove home two and Caden Snuder, Brady Chandler and Dylan Bryan each knocked in a run.
— Sequatchie County 6, Chattanooga Christian 3: Bodie Terry allowed just one hit and struck out 14 over seven innings in which he did not allow an earned run. Griffin Hall went 2-for-3 and stole a base for the Indians.
— Lookout Valley 2, Tellico Plains 1: The Yellow Jackets won on a walk-off double by Jarrett Adams with one out in the bottom of the seventh. Adams’ big hit backed up Jacob Winchester who was sharp on the mound, only allowing five hits in seven quality innings. Chrisitian Chandler went 3-for-4 while Jackson Qualls went 2-for-3 in the win.
— Sale Creek 12, Arts & Sciences 2: Drew Hillian drove in three and Seth Hodge earned the win, allowing just two earned runs and striking out nine. Jacob Elrod and Spencer Cates each went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBIs for the Panthers.
— Soddy-Daisy 10, Ooltewah 0: Taylor Lloyd struck out 10 over five shutout innings while also going 2-for-3 with a double and three runs batted in. Jenna Sims sparked the Lady Trojans as she homered and doubled on her way to a three RBI performance, while Courtney Sneed and Javaria Smith (two RBIs) both went 3-for-3.
— Red Bank 12, Hixson 0: Bailey Phillips earned the pitching win with seven strikeouts and also went 3-for-3 with a home run. Zoe Helms was 3-for-4 with a home run and Taylor Bono 4-for-4 with two runs scored for Red Bank.
— East Hamilton 5, Cleveland 0: Syerra Rogers allowed just two hits, striking out 15 and also drove in a run to lead the Lady Hurricanes. Henley Apps and Danielle Wasserstrom also added RBI hits.
— Walker Valley 6, Bradley Central 1: Junior Hailey Leslie struck out nine batters and allowed only two hits over seven strong innings for the win in which she backed herself with a two-run double. Sierra Brown went 2-for-4 and scored two runs for the Lady Mustangs.
— Sequatchie County 22, Bledsoe County 0: The Lady Indians’ hit parade was led by Addy Edgmon and Jesyca Dennis. Edgmon went 4-for-5 with three home runs a double and nine RBIs, while Dennis went 4-for-5 with a home run and a double along with six RBIs. Megan Hall also homered while collecting three hits and three runs for Sequatchie County. Cali Green threw a shutout with seven strikeouts.
— Central 11, East Ridge 8: Calli Morgan drove in five runs and earned the victory on the mound for the Lady Purple Pounders who also received strong pefromances by Kassy Griffith (three hits), Karleigh Schwarzl (triple, three RBIs) and Malorie Parris (two hits). Ally Goodwin went 3-for-3 for East Ridge whose Amiyah Williams and Kelsey Fincher each had two hits and two runs scored.