High School Sports

Ocean Springs falls 1-0 in 6A State Finals

BOB SMITH/SPECIAL TO THE SUN HERALD 
 Ocean Springs Caleb Burke (9) controls the ball during the MHSAA Soccer State 6A Championship held in Clinton Saturday February 6th 2016. (For the Sun Herald/Bob Smith)
BOB SMITH/SPECIAL TO THE SUN HERALD Ocean Springs Caleb Burke (9) controls the ball during the MHSAA Soccer State 6A Championship held in Clinton Saturday February 6th 2016. (For the Sun Herald/Bob Smith) Bob Smith

CLINTON -- Ocean Springs coach Jeff French said they had practiced two thinks for two weeks.

Set pieces and throw-ins.

And that is what decided the game.

Madison Central's Zach Bailey scored on a header off a corner kick with two minutes left in overtime to lift the Jaguars past the Greyhounds 1-0 to claim the MHSAA Boys Class 6A state championship.

It is Madison Central's (19-3-2) fourth straight 6A state championship and fourth overall in school history.

"Tough very tough game and both teams left it out on the field," French said. "I told the guys before the game know where you at on defense for set pieces and unfortunately that one time that got one. This one is going to sting for a while."

The Greyhounds (16-7-2) had plenty of opportunities to either take the lead in regulation or tie the game in overtime.

In regulation Ocean Springs' Steven Gallagher had a shot go just wide of the goal, while in overtime just after Madison Central took the lead Allan Mays had a shot hit the cross bar.

"It is a Cecil Hinds coach team, but once we settled down we were playing our style of game and where to pass the ball around and get us some chances," French said. "We had flashes tonight of how capable we were of getting the ball in the net."

Once the game got into overtime French had confidence due to Madison Central playing in an overtime game on Thursday night at Tupelo.

"Felt really good cause we thought they'd be worn down after playing in overtime two nights ago," French said. "But they made one more play than we did and it hurts."

In the coaching dual French is now 0-5 against Madison Central coach Cecil Hinds in state championship games.

"We are best friends on and off the field," French said. "We have the up most respect for each other and he is one heckuva coach."

Now heading into next year French will remind the guys coming of this game.

"We will take two weeks off and then we will start getting ready for next year," he said. "We got a good nucleus coming back and hopefully they will a fresh taste of how this one ended."

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