By Diana Lewis
Johnson’s Juan Carlos Gomez gave a glimpse of what was to come with an early goal Friday against Loganville. His strike from 30-yards out propelled the Knights to an early lead and a 7-2 region win Friday at Billy Ellis Memorial.
Johnson’s goals were spread around with seven different players finding the back of the net.
“I’m very pleased with tonight’s performance,” Knights coach Brian Shirley said. “I think we connected well and are showing what we have been working on, especially these last few weeks.”
Johnson’s solid start (8-2, 2-0 Region 8-5A) hasn’t come easy. Against the Red Devils, Shirley said his team started to mend the way they attacked in the final third, which was a weakness in losses to Class 7A Mountain View and Greater Atlanta Christian.
“I think we’re starting to find a rhythm on the attack,” Shirley said. “We have had back-to-back games where our attack has been a lot more fluent.”
However, Loganville showed that they can score, and score with a clean shot.
Loganville forward Govinda Goberdhan brought the Red Devils back into the game with a half volley to the near post to beat Johnson goalie Cooper Bowen, bringing the score to 3-2 just 30 seconds after Johnson’s Jose Gomez scored his first of the night and the third for Johnson.
As players off the bench came into the match, the Knights continued to battle. Cole Bowen, Rudy Orosco and Junior Arellano each scored a Knights goal in the last 25 minutes of the match.
“The guys coming off the bench are hungry and want to see minutes, this is what drives competition within the team,” Shirley said.
The Knights, however, have the advantage of having an 11th field player that player being goalkeeper and Georgia State signee Cooper Bowen.
Bowen often times is used as a last defender, switching the field and distributing the ball down the middle of the pitch to find pockets of space for midfielders.
“I know everything I learn and do here will propel me into that next season in college, but I’m focused on here and now and only on this team right now,” Bowen said. “Repeat (of last season) is what our team has in mind.”
Johnson hosts Walnut Grove at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday in Oakwood.
JOHNSON GIRLS 2, LOGANVILLE 1: Maria Rivera scored the winning goal with 13 seconds left in the match for the Knights (3-5, 2-1 Region 8-5A).
Johnson hosts Flowery Branch at 6 p.m. tonight.