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For fourth time, River Hill looks to win boys and girls soccer state titles in same year

On three occasions -- in 1997, 1999 and 2007 -- the River Hill boys and girls soccer teams shared the biggest of spotlights as both won state championships.

Thursday at Loyola University's Ridley Athletic Complex, the two teams will try to accomplish the feat again. It won't be easy with both playing against undefeated opponents.

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The No. 3 River Hill boys will take a 17-0-1 record into their game against Huntingtown (18-0) with game time set for 5 p.m. The No. 2 River Hill girls (16-2) will follow against Linganore (16-0) at 7:35 p.m.

Championship experience is definitely on the side of the River Hill teams, which have combined to win 17 state titles. The Huntingtown boys and Linganore girls are both making their first appearance in a state championship game.

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On the boys side, the Hawks have been on a seasonlong mission after losing in the state semifinals against eventual champion Urbana last year. In Saturday's 1-0 semifinal win over C. Milton Wright, they received a goal from junior standout Mike Heitzmann early in the second half and brilliantly protected the advantage.

The River Hill girls, who are looking for a third straigtht title (they've also won three straight two other times), also showed second-half poise to come from behind against Bel Air, 2-1, in Saturday's semifinal. Trailing, 1-0, at the break, Victoria Tran tied the game 10 minutes into the second half and then Jessica Hopkins scored the game-winner midway through with cohesive defense handling the rest.

Linganore comes into the game with 13 shutouts and allowing just three goals all season.

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