Soccer Dawgs grow to 3-0 on season

by Sean Dunlap

Franklin County’s varsity boys soccer team improved to 3-0 on the season after taking back-to-back home wins over Lawrence County, a 5-0 decision, on Tuesday, Nov. 8 and a 2-1 victory over North Pike on Thursday, Nov. 10.


The Soccer Dawgs scored three goals prior to intermission and two more afterwards to upend the visiting Cougars — on the strength of 37 shots and 17 shots on goal offensively while collecting 95 defensive stops.

Lawrence County was held to only one shot in the contest.

“This team is out to prove themselves as contenders,” FC Head Soccer Coach Jeff Long said. “We are young, but talented and experienced. It’s easy to see that they love the game and they have some ‘swagger’ about them.

“Our depth is getting better as well, with guys improving and now able to step in and contribute. We have a chance to do something special this season if we can stay healthy and keep working hard.”

Landon Furlow had a team-high eight shots and four shots on goal with two goals — one of those on a penalty kick — for the Soccer Dawgs while Xavien Felton and Jamari Tolliver helped pace FC with five shots and three SOG apiece with a goal each against the Cougars.

Kolby Cox also had five shots and two SOG as Zachary Kent recorded four shots and one SOG with Terrence Fields and Mason Emfinger adding three shots and two SOG apiece with Fields tacking on a goal.

Jaquez Anderson, Mason Orr, Parker Cupit and Tim Hutto all had one shot each in the contest.

Four Soccer Dawgs had assists — Carson Laird, Tolliver, Furlow and Emfinger.

Kent led Franklin County with 12 defensive stops while Fields and Cox added 10 apiece and Chris Carraway and Preston Cupit finished with eight each.

Other Soccer Dawgs collecting defensive take-aways included: Drew Mullins, seven; Emfinger, seven; Felton, six; Furlow, six; Tolliver, five; Parker Jordan, four; Orr, three; Anderson, two; Alex Scott, one; Caden Tyson, one; Laird, one; Jack Hutto, one; Josh Foreman, one; and Peyton Touchstone, one.

Goalkeeper Dakota Chisholm claimed his second win of the season by going the distance in front of the net, and this was his first shut-out in the campaign thus far.


Both the Bulldogs and Jaguars entered last Thursday’s match-up undefeated and the two squads played to a scoreless stalemate prior to intermission.

After the mid-game break, FC scored two goals, including a successful penalty kick, off Furlow’s leg and that was enough to help the home team claim a 2-1 victory.

“Sometimes in soccer, there can be times when it is difficult to finish chances,” Long said of the game. “North Pike played hard and was a good team. Their goalkeeper must have had 16 saves as he was athletic and played great.

“I’m proud of our boys for keeping their composure and continuing to battle by finding a way to win. This was a good test for us in the early going of the season.”

Franklin County had 42 total shots and 19 shots on goal against the Jaguars with Furlow’s nine shots and five SOG leading the Bulldogs’ offensive effort.

Tolliver seemed to be all over the field as evidenced by his eight shots and four shots on goal.

Cox had a tremendous effort with six shots and three shots on goal with Emfinger and Felton both having five shots and two SOG.

Additionally, Kent recorded three shots and one SOG as Fields and Anderson finished with two shots and one SOG each. Mullins and Jordan had one shot apiece.

Defensively, Kent and Fields were top Dawgs with 10 stops each as Cox contributed nine and Felton had eight.

Those with defensive stops against North Pike included: Carraway, seven; Furlow, seven; Emfinger, seven; Preston Cupit, seven; Mullins, six; Tolliver, five; Jordan, four; and Anderson, two.

Chisholm went the distance as keeper and had six saves versus surrendering one goal to the Jaguars in taking his third win in as many regular season games.

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The junior varsity Soccer Dawgs claimed their initial win of the 2022-2023 season with a 4-1 victory over Lawrence County on Tuesday, Nov. 8 at home.

Tim Hutto and Gavin Pace led the way for Franklin County with two goals each on offense.

Defensively, Lawson Murray had a team-high eight stops and goalkeeper Blake Mann recorded four saves in holding a shut-out prior to the mid-game break.

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The Soccer Dawgs returned to play on Monday, Nov. 14 with a showdown against Morton, who Franklin County defeated by a 3-2 margin in the 2022-2023 regular season opener on Saturday, Oct. 29

Results from Monday’s game will appear in next week’s edition of The Franklin Advocate.

On Thursday, Nov. 14, FC is slated to head to Lawrence County with both JV and varsity boys games set for 5 and 7:15 p.m., respectively.

After a Thanksgiving holiday break, FC will be at home to face Hazlehurst in the Class I District 7 season opener at 7:15 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 29.