Newsome eliminates familiar opponent, East Bay
LITHIA - If Newsome's three-goal win against East Bay in the Class 5A-District 8 final didn't exorcise the demons of facing a team it tied three times in the regular season in the past four seasons, then Tuesday's 3-1 win in the 5A-Region 2 semifinals surely did. The Wolves took a 1-0 lead in the first half as sophomore Caroline Evers scored on a penalty kick in the 19th minute. Newsome stretched its lead in the 45th minute, as leading scorer Karina Gutsche struck from 17 yards out to the far post. East Bay stayed aggressive, not giving up any cheap opportunities, but Newsome put the game out of reach with a goal from freshman defender Emily Jones, her second of the season."That goal was very important," Newsome coach Kelly Townsend said. "I think that was the clincher of the game." The Indians didn't quit, though, as Natalie Preston scored in the 72nd minute to avert the shutout. "I thought this was anybody's game," Townsend said. "We beat them 3-0 in the district finals but that game is over and done with and they are a good team, so I knew anything could happen." The win advanced Newsome to Friday's region final, where it will - for the third straight season - face Lakeland Jenkins. The Wolves have been eliminated the past two season's by Jenkins, including a 1-0 overtime loss last season.