But head lacrosse coach Wesley Hatfield wasted no time acknowledging senior goalie Ben Rigger as a primary reason for Decatur’s No. 1 state ranking heading into the GHSA state playoffs this week.
“Ben is the complete package in goal,” said Hatfield of Rigger, a four-year starter who was a second team all-state selection last spring and is a team captain this season. “He has great eyes, is a strong decision maker and isn’t scared to come flying out of the goal to make a play.
“He’s also smart as anything, and that mental game along with his individual goalie skills make him one of the best in the state.”
As one of the elite net-minders in Georgia, Rigger has been the last line of defense for a Decatur squad that is yielding just fewer than six scores per contest — helping Decatur to 16 wins and an Area 4A-AAAAA Championship in the process.
“At times this year I’ve just thrown my hands up to the sky and been thankful he was in our net, because it seems like for every five mistakes we make, his play is able to cover up four of them.”