For the first time in two years, soccer teams stepped on to the pitch for official playoff matches this week.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, last season’s playoffs was postponed, and later cancelled, denying teams the opportunity to pursue their dream of a state championship.
Every team was eager to return to the playoffs and renew that quest and while a fortunate few local squads took the first step with bi-district victories, most of those road came to an end on Tuesday in the area round.
Horn was looking to spring its second straight upset, and it came close before dropping 1-0 decision to Waxahachie at Mesquite Memorial Stadium.
It was a similar match to their opener.
The Jaguars (15-7-2) were the underdog on paper as the fourth seed, but they were able to find a way, pulling out a 1-0 shootout victory over 9-6A champion Wylie on Friday at Royse City’s Bulldog Stadium.
Both defenses rose to the challenge, as the teams went through 100 minutes of regulation and a pair of overtimes without a score, sending it to a shootout.
It was there that Horn shined, edging the Pirates, 4-3, to punch their ticket to the second round.
Poteet saw its season come to an end with a 6-0 loss to Joshua on Friday.
The final score was a little misleading, as it was a 1-0 game with 30 minutes left before the Owls exploded down the stretch, as Victoria Neeley scored twice and Reagan Easter, Karen Miranda, Valerie Greer and Alexandra Garcia added goals.
North Mesquite, the lone 6A boys representative, had picked up a victory, while West Mesquite fell in the 5A playoffs on Friday.
The Stallions took on North Garland in a bi-district match at Homer B. Johnson Stadium and it was a battle.
It went down to the wire, but behind goals from Christian Valdez and Junior Garcia, North Mesquite was able to claim a 2-1 victory.
That margin would be a familiar one for the Stallions, as Tuesday's match was decided by the same score, only this time it as Duncanville who claimed a 2-1 win to eliminate North Mesquite from the playoffs.
The West Mesquite (11-10-3) squared off with Red Oak in one of the most high-scoring matches of Friday, but fell just short in a 4-3 loss at Goodloe Stadium.