Three area teams received byes, but only two of the eight boys and girls soccer teams in Knox County are considered favorites as the IHSAA released the pairings for its soccer State Tournaments on Sunday.
Teams getting first-round byes were the Lincoln and Rivet girls and the North Knox boys. The favorites are the ranked teams, Class A No. 12 Rivet on the girls side and Class A No. 8 South Knox on the boys side. Since the Patriots have a ranking and a bye, they appear to have the easiest path to a third sectional in four years.
Tournaments get underway next Monday and Tuesday, with all championships slated for next Saturday, Oct. 12.
Rivet’s girls, along with South Knox and North Knox, head to Sullivan. Next Tuesday’s first-round matchups pit Washington Catholic (4-7) against the Warriors (0-11) at 5 p.m., and the host Golden Arrows (6-8-1) against the Spartans (7-9) at 7 p.m. Those winners play at 5 p.m. next Thursday while the Patriots (8-5-1) follow against Bloomfield (0-7) at 7 p.m. The championship is at 7 p.m. Oct. 12.
Rivet owns wins by at least two goals over everyone in the field except the Cardinals, who visit St. Vincent’s Field for the regular season finale Saturday.
South Knox has the best record in the area at 14-0-1, but it has to go the long route. Fortunately for the Spartans, they are at home for the first time in the postseason. The South Knox Sectional starts next Monday with White River Valley (4-8-1) facing Bloomfield (1-7-1) at 6 p.m. Next Tuesday, South Knox goes against Washington Catholic (2-12-1) at 6 p.m., and Rivet (6-7-2) battles Mitchell (1-12-1) at 8 p.m. The next night, North Knox (6-8-1) plays Monday’s winner at 6 p.m., and Tuesday’s winners square off at 8 p.m. The championship is at 3 p.m. Saturday.
The Patriots may provide the biggest test for South Knox as they’re the only team to hold the high-scoring Spartans under two goals this season.
The Alices boys get started Monday in the Class 2A Washington Sectional. After the host and fifth-ranked Hatchets (12-3-1) face Southridge (3-6-1) at 6 p.m., Lincoln (3-11-1) takes on Pike Central (8-6-1) at 7:45 p.m. Next Wednesday, Monday’s winners play at 6 p.m., and No. 18 Gibson Southern (10-4-1) and Princeton (11-4) square off at 7:45 p.m. The title game is at 2 p.m. Oct. 12.
Lincoln’s girls compete in the Class 2A Jasper Sectional, which opens next Tuesday with Pike Central (8-5-1) facing Princeton (4-7-3) at 7 p.m. Next Thursday, the Alices (6-6) open against Washington (6-9) at 5 p.m., and the host Wildcats (6-7-3) take on Tuesday’s winner at 7 p.m. The championship is at 7 p.m. Oct. 12.