Austin-East and Farragut soccer kick it for a cause

Soccer fans have a chance to catch a friendly while making a difference on Saturday evening.
Published: Apr. 15, 2022 at 12:48 AM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Soccer fans have a chance to catch a friendly while making a difference on Saturday evening.

Austin-East, the defending Single-A state champions in boys soccer - will host Farragut for the first time ever at 5:30 and all ticket proceeds will stay with the program.

The Roadrunners struggled to raise enough funds for their state title run last season before community members stepped up with monetary donations.

”Last season we really needed the extra push of funds towards the end because we made it to the state championship, so we’re having those same expectations and we’re hoping to raise money for that,” Austin-East head soccer coach Jonathan Netherland said.

The friendly came about by chance last year - when both programs were playing on the same field at different times during the state tournament.”

“When I looked at the schedule, I realized they were playing on the exact same field we were. We took the bus out there early because they were representing East Tennessee and so were we. We surrounded the field and cheering and they ended up winning,” said Farragut head coach Bradley Culbreth.

Netherland and Culbreth exchanged numbers in hopes of setting up a match.

“We have a long history of a powerful program here and they’re the defending state champs and our programs have never played each other in soccer. When we talked, I said there’s no reason why we can’t try to get this done,” said Culbreth.

Netherland says he hopes the match will shine a light on soccer in East Knoxville.

Tickets will be available at the gate.

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