Newport Harbor – 10
Santa Margarita – 9
Rancho Santa Margarita, March 14 – It was a game of momentum as Newport Harbor built a lead, Santa Margarita made the come-back, and the visiting Sailors held strong to put a tough victory on ice.
Just over a minute into the game, Newport freshman attacker Caroline Farley rolled the crease, dodged twice against a double team, and ripped a shot to give her visiting Tars the early lead. Less than a minute later, the Eagles’ senior midfielder and draw specialist, Erin Dibernardo, converted a free position shot from the center hash to even up the match. Newport senior Laura Tran answered a minute later with a center-hash free position of her own, giving the Sailors a lead they would not relinquish. Just before the twenty minute mark, senior Katie Hendrix dodged through pressure on a free position and gave her team the 3-1 advantage. On the next possession, SMCHS junior Aidan Pike slipped through the Newport defense, received a dump pass from Dibernardo, and shot to bring the Eagles back to within one.
Newport answered less than a minute later, with junior Adena Rothbard pounding the cage with a hard free position shot. The home team looked as if they would come back to within a goal off a nice drive, but an off-ball attacker made illegal contact and Newport was awarded the ball. In the possession that followed, Tran earned a free position shot, made a deft move around a defender, and shot the ball with poise to put the Sailors up, 5-2. As the half progressed, sophomore goalie Jade Rettig heated up and denied a number of tough shots, one of which turned into a beautiful transition goal fed from Tran to Farley the younger. The Tar defense, anchored by Jill Rosten, Hayden Allen, Amber Skytte, and Delaney Knipp, held steadfast for an extended portion of the half as their team built a 7-2 lead. The final goal of the run came as Rothbard fed a streaking Hendrix in transition for the emphatic shot and goal.
Moments later, SMCHS junior goalie Victoria Hoffman denied a potent shot from Hendrix. Soon, Santa Margarita came back on offense, settled the ball, and earned a free position, which sophomore Katelyn Murphy buried to end the NHHS run. At halftime, Newport led 7-3.
In the second half, Dibernardo continued to dominate on the draw, and just over a minute into the half junior Sidney Ruiz took advantage of a defender out of position, rolled the crease, and narrowed her team’s deficit to three. The home team continued to press, but found themselves offside. The ball was awarded to Hendrix who passed to Rothbard, who passed to senior Sarah Farley, who fed her sister for the quick strike and the 8-4 lead. The teams battled back-and-forth, until Rothbard broke the mini-stalemate with a signature face-dodge and shot.
From here, the Eagles came back strong and built a run of four goals from Dibernardo (assisted by Pike), Murphy (off a ground ball and drive), Murphy (assisted in transition by Dibernardo), and Dibernardo (off a center-hash free position). Just like that, in a matter of three minutes, the SMCHS was within one of the Sailors. The Newport defense regrouped, stopped the bleeding, and went back on the offensive. With just over nine minutes to go, Farley the elder earned a free position and dodged through crashing defenders to put NHHS up by two. For the next several minutes, the teams went back and forth, with Newport earning a few key steals off good defense and solid riding, and Santa Margarita surviving several shots on an extended Sailor possession. Ultimately, Pike found the ball in transition, brought it through X, and rolled the crease for the home team’s ninth goal.
The 10-9 Newport lead would hold for the final 5:51, as Newport earned the draw control but then turned it over on a freak trip and fall. SMCHS turned it back over on a hard NHHS crash, and Newport worked their offense to burn a few minutes before the Eagles forced another turnover—which they lost in transition. Newport called a timeout with just under two minutes remaining, came back to the field, and ran the clock with an effective stall against double-team pressure to seal the one-goal victory.
Newport Harbor – 12
Esperanza – 2
Anaheim, March 9 – Off the opening draw of the night, Newport senior Sarah Farley won the ball and fed senior Katie Hendrix, who earned a free position and pocketed the shot. The Sailors never looked back.
On the ensuing possession, Farley earned a few free positions, the last of which she converted with a graceful drive through crashing defense. As the match progressed, Newport continued to dominate the draw and the transition game. The home team held strong for seven or eight minutes, but the visiting Sailors would not be denied, as their ride forced a turnover which Farley punished for the 3-0 lead with 15:55 remaining. Hendrix took the ensuing draw and drove to cage for her second of the night.
At halftime, the score was 6-0. Esperanza attempted a second-half comeback, with goals from juniors Lauren Kurtz and Brianna Bravo; goalie Monica Silva played valiantly and came up with some very nice stops. But the Sailors never lost focus and finished what they started with the 12-2 victory.
For Newport, Farley ended with seven goals and eight draw controls (!), Hendrix had two goals and an assist, senior Heather Roberts put two away, and freshman Caroline Farley scored one and assisted one. Assists also went to senior Corinne Reuter, senior Laura Tran, and junior Rylee Warmington.
Newport Harbor – 1
Mater Dei – 16
Costa Mesa, March 2 – The score really tells the story of this one. Just after the midpoint of the first half, the Monarchs pushed the game into running time. Newport could not string together more than a handful of passes, as the reigning champions pursued the ball relentlessly. At the end, senior Laura Tran saved the Sailors from a shutout with a last-minute free position ripper. For Mater Dei, senior Lauren Gonzalez ended with five goals, senior Grace Houser scored four, senior Mackenzie Wallevand dominated the midfield and finished with two goals, sophomore Tess Keiser netted two; sophomore Peyton Smith, junior Syndey Payne, and senior Maddie Hooks each scored one. There were zero assists in the contest.
La Costa Canyon Outpaces Newport Harbor
Newport Harbor – 4
La Costa Canyon – 9
Carlsbad, March 11 – It was a tale of two halves for the Sailors, who arrived late both literally and figuratively.
La Costa Canyon made good on their opportunities in the first half, winning the draw and ground ball battle, controlling the pace of the game, and spreading their scoring around. Five different Mavericks scored in the first sixteen minutes against a listless group of Sailors. The halftime score was 7-0.
But in the second half, after giving up an early goal to spot LCC eight, the visiting Newport Harbor team came to life—winning the draw, connecting passes, exerting defensive pressure up and down the field, and generating goal scoring opportunities. Ultimately, goals from seniors Katie Hendrix (who netted two), Laura Tran, and Sarah Farley earned NHHS the 4-2 second half victory.
Newport Harbor Falls to Trabuco Hills
Newport Harbor – 7
Trabuco Hills – 13
Mission Viejo, March 7 – The evening opened with Trabuco attempting the quick transition strike off the draw and Newport sophomore goalie, Jade Rettig, making a great save. Trabuco ultimately drew first blood with a free position feed from Shelby Morris to Juliet Mooney, who received cleanly on the doorstep of the NHHS goal. Both Rettig and Trabuco goalie Ashley Bell stepped up into big saves over the opening minutes of the game, but Trabuco put away their second at the five-minute mark, as sophomore Hennesey Evans dodged through three crashing defenders and buried the shot. Minutes later, Evans scored from the free position to give the home team a 3-0 lead.
On the next possession, NHHS sophomore Adena Rothbard answered by streaking through two defenders to score the Sailors’ first goal. Evans came back with a free position to make the game 4-1, which Rothbard answered by scooping a loose ball in front of the home cage and dunking the shot. As the first half developed, the teams went back and forth a few times; senior Sarah Farley earned a nice takeaway and Rettig made another spectacular save on an equally spectacular dodge through three defenders and shot from Evans. On the clear, Rettig hit sophomore Delaney Knipp, who passed to senior Laura Tran, who moved the ball to senior Jessica Woodruff, who fed a streaking senior, Farley, who dropped the boom and brought the Sailors within one on a textbook transition goal.
Trabuco answered with another free position from sophomore Ieneke Jimenez. After the Sailors took down the ensuing draw and settled the ball in the Mustang zone, senior Katie Hendrix drove, pumped to avoid the player between her and the cage, pulled out, and re-attacked for the emphatic dodge, shot, and goal. Moments later, Evans was given another free position, which she converted; on the next possession, Mooney sliced through a double team and pocketed the Mustangs’ seventh of the night. The visitors then earned a great chance on a double cut and feed from senior Heather Roberts to Hendrix, who rocketed a shot off the Trabuco goalpost. In the last minute of the half, Trabuco junior Kristen Rosenberg put away another free position shot to bring an 8-4 lead into halftime.
Evans took down the opening draw of the second half and, after Trabuco settled the ball for a minute, drew another free position that she put away with authority. In the ensuing possession, Evans drew a controversial check-to-the-head call. However, Newport was able to make good on the man-down, as Adena Rothbard dodged through five Trabuco defenders and drew a free position of her own, which she put past Bell in the face of a hard crash. From here, there were a few minutes of controversy, as a dangerous follow through directly into the face of a Newport player went uncalled. Evans, who was awarded a free position on the play, converted to bring the score to 10-5. Newport pulled down the next draw and had an extended possession that ended in a turnover, and in an unsettled play, Evans scooped a ground ball and drove through pressure to finish with another goal.
The Sailors earned another set off the draw and committed another turnover, opening the door to an extended Mustang possession that ended with a free position for Mooney, which she buried for Trabuco’s twelfth goal. Less than a minute later, Newport senior Sarah Farley wound up and cranked a free position of her own to keep the game within reach for the visitors. However, the Sailors could not build a run of goals and after a few trips up and back down the field—with the Sailors pressing and the Mustangs holding—each team scored one more (a free position from Farley and a transition strike from Mooney) and the game came to a close.