Oconee County High School senior Owen Hallauer scored more goals this season than any Warrior has in the program’s history.
Hallauer broke the program’s goal record with 39 goals in 18 games this season. His final goal won the Warriors a state championship in Macon on Saturday night.
Nerves gripped the senior prior to Saturday’s game.
A player with the Hallauer’s scoring ability draws the eyes of those in the stands and the Warriors’ opponents.
For much of the second half of the season, Hallauer drew shadows on defense along with two and sometimes three defenders in his hip pocket at all times.
After missing a goal early in the match, Hallauer put the ball over the Upson-Lee goalkeeper to give the Warriors a 1-0 lead that they never relinquished.
Late in the game Hallauer dropped back and helped on defense keep the Knights from striking the tying blow.
His performance has made Hallauer this week’s Oconee Physical Therapy & Sports Rehabilitation/Oconee Enterprise Athlete of the Week.
“Before the game I had some nerves,” Hallauer said. “It meant a lot to me and all of the people that supported us throughout the years, especially this year. When I got the goal it felt great. It was kind of like a weight off my shoulders. I just knew that the team had to step up and I dropped back to mid-field to help defend. We all just won our individual battles and came together as a team.”
The last two years of Hallauer’s soccer career have been spent in the suburbs of Atlanta playing club soccer in search of a college soccer scholarship. Hallauer played for the Warriors in his freshman season before returning to the team prior to the start of the 2019 season.
Hallauer accomplished what he set out to do when he sacrificed two years of high school soccer. Hallauer secured his place in the college ranks in that time as he is scheduled to play collegiately at Emory University next year.
Playing one more high school soccer season was meant to be fun for Hallauer.
He wanted to go out with the friends he grew up playing with. The season turned out to be more than he had asked for and one he will cherish.
“It was incredible, it’s just something I’ve never really felt before and just being with the people that I have known for so many years now,” Hallauer said. “It was just a dream for all of us. We just made it a reality... I couldn’t have asked for a better year. Every thing went the way I wanted it to go. I think the team feels the same way. Everything just went perfectly this year. I am very happy that I decided to play this year. I probably wouldn’t be playing in college next year if I did play for KSA, but I would say it was worth the wait.”
Oconee Physical Therapy & Sports Rehabilitation/Oconee Enterprise Athlete of the Week is chosen by the sports staff of The Oconee Enterprise. You are welcome to email nominations to firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday at 10 a.m.
Oconee Physical Therapy & Sports Rehabilitation can be reached at www.oconeept.com