Boys soccer blog: Previewing the final  three classes in the boys soccer championships

The final three classes -- AAAAAA, AAAA and AA --begin play Friday in the boys state high school soccer playoffs. Here's a preview of what to expect:

Class AAAAAA

No. 1 team: Dalton

2018 champion: Chattahoochee

Overview: Dalton enters the tournament undefeated at 18-0-0 after capturing the Region 6 championship and will carry its No. 1 seed into the first-round matchup against Northview, the four seed from Region 7. Dalton is looking for its fifth title after sharing the AAAA title with Heritage in 2003 and winning three consecutive titles -- in AAAA (2013-14) and AAAAA (2015). No. 3 Chattahoochee, the defending champs, will face Osborne to open its bid for a three-repeat and fourth overall title after winning the AAAA crown in 2011.  

First-round matchups:

R4 #3 Morrow at R1 #2 Houston County

R3 #4 Evans at R2 #1 Richmond Hill

R6 #3 Osborne at R7 #2 Chattahoochee

R5 #4 Douglas County at R8 #1 Gainesville

R1 #3 Northside-Warner Robins at R4 #2 Lovejoy

R2 #4 Bradwell Institute at R3 #1 Lakeside-Evans

R7 #3 Cambridge at R6 #2 Allatoona

R8 #4 Dacula at R5 #1 Alexander

R2 #3 Effingham County at R3 #2 Greenbrier

R1 #4 Coffee at R4 #1 Tucker

R5 #3 South Paulding at R8 #2 Habersham Central

R6 #4 Sprayberry at R7 #1 Pope

R3 #3 Heritage-Conyers at R2 #2 Glynn Academy 

R4 #4 Drew at R1 #1 Valdosta 

R8 #3 Apalachee at R5 #2 Northgate

R7 #4 Northview at R6 #1 Dalton

Class AAAA

No. 1 team: Upson-Lee

2018 champion: Northwest Whitfield

Overview: Top-ranked Upson-Lee is the riding a 10-game winning streak into its first-round meeting with Thomson. The Knights have not lost a match this season, but tied with Fayette County on Feb. 22. Defending champion Northwest Whitfield is ranked No. 8 . Whitfield has spent its last six games struggling with two ties, two losses and two victories, but five of the six matches were away games and a first-round home game will be welcomed.

First-round matchups:

R4 #3 Eastside at R1 #2 Columbus  

R3 #4 Thomson at R2 #1 Upson-Lee

R6 #3 Pickens at R7 #2 Blessed Trinity

R5 #4 Central-Carrollton at R8 #1 St. Pius X

R1 #3 Shaw at R4 #2 Druid Hills

R2 #4 West Laurens at R3 #1 Richmond Academy

R7 #3 Marist at R6 #2 Northwest Whitfield

R8 #4 North Oconee at R5 #1 LaGrange

R2 #3 Perry at R3 #2 Baldwin

R1 #4 Northside-Columbus at R4 #1 Woodward Academy

R5 #3 Sandy Creek at R8 #2 Oconee County

R6 #4 Gilmer at R7 #1 Chestatee

R3 #3 Cross Creek at R2 #2 Spalding  

R4 #4 Luella at R1 #1 Cairo

R8 #3 Madison County at R5 #2 Cartersville

R7 #4 Flowery Branch at R6 #1 Southeast Whitfield

Class AA

No. 1 team: Coosa

2018 champion: Benedictine

Overview: At 15-1-1, Coosa is the team to beat entering the AA tournament, and after its 10-0 victory in the opening match against the Region 6 No. 4 seed KIPP, the Eagles are one step closer to the first boys soccer title. Last season's state champion, Benedictine, reclassified to AAA, which opens up the opportunity for a new AA champion. No. 2 Pepperell is 14-2-1 and riding an 11-game winning streak. Of those 11 games, Pepperell held opponents scoreless in seven matches, which included a run of five consecutive shutouts.

First-round matchups:

R4 #3 Johnson-Augusta at R1 #2 Fitzgerald  

R3 #4 Washington County at R2 #1 Vidalia

R6 #3 Therrell at R7 #2 Pepperell

R5 #4 Callaway at R8 #1 Social Circle

R1 #3 Berrien at R4 #2 Jefferson County

R2 #4 Jeff Davis at R3 #1 Dodge County

R7 #3 Gordon Central at R6 #2 South Atlanta

R8 #4 Union County at R5 #1 Lamar County

R2 #3 Toombs County at R3 #2 Dublin

R1 #4 Brooks County at R4 #1 Harlem

R5 #3 Spencer at R8 #2 Putnam County

R6 #4 KIPP at R7 #1 Coosa

R3 #3 East Laurens at R2 #2 Woodville Tompkins

R4 #4 Hephzibah at R1 #1 Thomasville

R8 #3 Rabun County at R5 #2 Bremen

R7 #4 Armuchee at R6 #1 Hapeville

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