BY NORM BETZ –
The Mena Ladycats and the Cossatot River Eagles soccer teams both advanced to the 4A State Playoffs. The Ladycats entered as the No. 4 seed out of the 4A-2 Region, while the Eagles entered the tournament as the No. 2 seed from the same region.
Due to the limited number of schools that have soccer as a school sport, there are different classifications playing in the same classification. The 4A-2 Girls Conference is made up of: 2A Gurdon High School, 3A Cossatot River High School, 3A Harmony Grove – Haskell, 4A Mena High School, 4A Arkadelphia High School, 4A Arkansas Baptist High School, 4A Malvern High School, 4A Central Arkansas Christian, and 4A Pulaski Robinson High School. The 4A-2 Boys Conference is made up of all the schools listed above, plus 2A Academic Plus Charter School and 3A Centerpoint High School.
There are nine teams in the girls conference and 11 teams in the boys conference. The top four teams from each conference advance to the 4A State Playoffs.
The No. 4 seed Mena Ladycats were matched up with Shiloh Christian High School, the No. 1 seed from the 4A-1 Region. Unfortunately for the Ladycats, their quest for a State Championship ended in the first-round, with a 6-0 loss to the Lady Saints. Shiloh Christian advanced past Conway Christian 6-0, but eventually lost in the semifinals to Central Arkansas Christian, 1-0.
The No. 2 seed Cossatot River Eagles also saw their bid for a State Championship fade in the first-round. The Eagles lost to Decatur High School, the No. 3 seed from the 4A-1 Region, 2-1. Decatur lost their next game to Warren 2-0 in the quarterfinals.
Both Central Arkansas Christian’s boys and girls will be playing in the 4A State Championship. The girls will play Gentry High School, while the boys will play 3A Danville High School.