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Girls' Soccer: Sage clinches CIF berth

Crade scores twice, as Lightning break third-place tie with Oxford Academy.

February 05, 2013|By Matt Szabo

NEWPORT COAST — Sage Hill School girls' soccer coach Catie Chase said her team came into Tuesday night's key Academy League match against Oxford Academy with three objectives.

The first objective was to honor and celebrate the team's seniors on senior night. The second objective was to play well, and the third was to win.

The Lightning accomplished all three objectives. Junior Meg Crade scored twice as the hosts won, 2-0, to solidify their hold on third place in league and clinch a CIF Southern Section Division 5 playoff spot.

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With one league match to go, Sage Hill (12-7-3, 4-4-1 in league) finally broke its third-place tie with Oxford Academy (3-5-1 in league). The teams played to a 1-1 draw in their first meeting in January.

"I feel like every time we play on our field, we always play so much better," Crade said. "We were a lot more prepared. We worked on passing and one-two touches, and switching the field. We just worked a lot harder."

Crade opened the scoring in the 29th minute, off a pass from freshman Alyssa Anderson. Crade's shot from near the top of the box found the lower left corner.

She struck again in the 46th minute, after the Oxford goalie came out but dropped the ball. The initial shot by senior Madi Jabara was blocked, but Crade found the back of the net with her shot, just before the Oxford keeper could get back in net.

The Lightning dominated scoring opportunities behind the play of juniors Allie Mowrey and Juliette Singarella and freshman Tiffany Taylor. Jabara nearly added her own goal with 10 minutes left, but the shot from the top of the box glanced off the right goal post.

"I've been playing soccer at Sage for three years now," Jabara said. "It felt really good to have a win like this. We've been so bonded this whole season. Especially after the last few games have been pretty rough, this is a pretty nice win for us."

The Sage back line of senior tri-captains Campbell Moore, Francesca D'Agostino and Sophia Witte kept Oxford's chances to a minimum. Chase felt comfortable enough to take sophomore Kekai Whitford out of the goal midway through the first half, placing her in the midfield. Freshman Lauren Thunen made three saves in goal for the Lightning the rest of the way.

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