SUWANEE -- North Gwinnett made a first-half goal from freshman Amanda Delgado stand up as the Bulldogs pulled out a 1-0 win over Collins Hill in Region 7-AAAAA girls soccer action Friday.
Delgado's first goal of the season came at the 23:13 mark of the first half and North (7-4, 3-0) maintained that one-goal advantage for the remaining 63 minutes.
Pressuring Collins Hill from the opening kickoff, North got a corner kick from Jessica Eberhart and Delgado headed the eventual game-winner into the back of the net for a 1-0 lead.
That would be enough as North played solid defense and maintained enough offensive pressure to keep Collins Hill (5-6, 1-1) at bay.
"I didn't expect it to be a low scoring game," said North head coach Erik Crawford. "But we did want to come out and put (Collins Hill) under pressure right from the start and get the early advantage. We wanted to put pressure on all three lines and our forwards, midfielders and defenders did that."
North, a winner over No. 6 Mill Creek last Friday, ended up with nine shots on goal and also had six corner kicks in the game. But Collins Hill freshman goal keeper Halla Jibreen kept the Eagles in the game by turning back all but Delgado's goal.
Meanwhile, Collins Hill -- ranked No. 8 in Class AAAAA and region champ a year ago -- managed just four shots on goal and eight shots overall as North goal keeper Austin McCausland got the shutout in goal in her second game.
"We've struggled in goal and now we've been getting players back from the basketball team and Austin is one of those players," Crawford said. "We've given up 23 goals this season and we needed someone to step up. This is her second game and her first full game in goal. I thought she did a good job and I thought our defense really did a good job protecting her."
Collins Hill's Taylor Donohue, a junior midfielder, and Mariah Dickey, a senior striker, were shut out by the North defense and the Eagles also had to play without senior striker Loren Mitchell.
Mitchell injured a knee in practice on Thursday and tried to warm up before Friday's game, but couldn't make the start and never hit the field.
"We played well tonight against a good team that didn't have all its players," Crawford said. "But I'm sure some folks look at our four losses and think we're not playing well. We're not worried about the perception of having four losses. We're starting to come together and getting the right pieces in place. Everyone understands their role."
NORTH BOYS 3, COLLINS HILL 1
The news wasn't any better for the Collins Hill boys as North pulled off the 3-1 upset win in Region 7-AAAAA.
A pair of goals from junior Kian Pourak led the North attack as the Bulldogs improved to 5-5-1 overall and 2-1 in region play.
North jumped on top in the first half with two goals in the final 10 minutes.
Pourak got North on the board first with 9:32 to go in the half as the Bulldogs took a 1-0 lead.
Junior James Lee came right back at 4:12 with North's second goal to make it 2-0 going into halftime.
Collins Hill, ranked No. 5 in Class AAAAA, cut into the North lead with 35:35 to go in the game as senior Nomis Cisic converted a penalty kick to make it a 2-1 advantage for the Bulldogs.
But Pourak got his second goal of the night with 6:48 remaining to make it 3-1 and salt the game away for North.
Maximillian Smith was solid in goal for North, especially in the second half as Collins Hill (7-3, 2-1) mounted more offensive pressure. But the sophomore held steady and allowed just the lone goal to Cisic.
The night of soccer at Fahring Field was recognized as a fundraiser for the Taylor Brooks Foundation. Taylor, who passed away on April 1, 2008, from Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor cancer, was a rising freshman at Collins Hill High School when she was diagnosed in July 2007.
The Foundation was established to increase the visibility of childhood cancer, support patients and caregivers, analyze and implement treatment options and research new treatments. Over $1,500 was raised Friday night.