NEWBERRY — The Newberry women’s lacrosse team fended off a determined Coker squad in the Wolves 17-12 Senior Night victory at Setzler Field on Friday evening.
Newberry (6-10, 4-2 SAC) looked in control of Coker (3-9, 2-4 SAC) in the early going, rattling off three goals in the opening two minutes. The Wolves first three scorers were junior Victoria Thomas, redshirt-freshman Ajahna Grosvenor and sophomore Jessica Baxtrom.
Two of the Wolves’ opening goals were unassisted, while Baxtrom’s was setup by senior KerriAnn Barlage.
Barlage got in on the scoring five minutes into the opening period as she scored a man-up goal off a free position chance. Coker’s first goal came at 20:27, before Newberry sophomore Alexis Cathcart netted her first goal of the night.
The strong senior night continued for Barlage as she picked up a ground ball on one end of the field, before clearing the ball and setting up a goal for sophomore Carly Marksberry.
Cathcart added a second goal two minutes after Marksberry’s tally to give the Wolves a 7-1 lead.
After a Coker timeout, the Wolves took advantage of a Cobras turnover to gain possession and allow Baxtrom to score off an assist from sophomore Noelle Allen. Baxtrom struck nearly 30 seconds later off an assist from Marksberry.
The Wolves 9-1 lead, soon was chipped away at by the Cobras as Coker scored five straight to pull within three of the Wolves. Grosvenor responded to the Cobras offensive charge by controlling the draw and taking the ball straight to the goal for her ninth goal of the season.
Grosvenor’s goal gave the Wolves a 10-6 lead heading into halftime.
Coker opened the second period with a goal, before Baxtrom corralled a shot off the crossbar and scored to put the Wolves up 11-7. Coker scored four straight following Baxtrom’s goal to tie the game at 11-11.
With a spot in the inaugural Food Lion SAC Lacrosse Championship semifinals on the line, the Wolves did not allow the Cobras to gain a lead as Barlage controlled the draw following Coker’s 11th goal and took the ball to the goal herself for her 47th goal of the season.
The eventual game winner came for the Wolves with 11:34 remaining in the opening period as Grosvenor netted Newberry’s 13th goal of the game.
Coker would score one final goal before Newberry scored four insurance goals to earn a 17-12 victory and a spot in the semifinals of the conference tournament.
Baxtrom led the Wolves with four goals, while Barlage and Grosvenor netted three each. Thomas and Cathcart both scored two, while Marksberry, Allen and senior Kayla Hopper each scored one goal.
Marksberry finished with three assists, while Barlage dished out two.
Sophomore goalkeeper Morgan Raffaele came up big for the Wolves in goal with 10 saves on the evening.
Barlage led the Wolves with five ground balls and seven caused turnovers, while Grosvenor controlled six draws in the game.
Halftime saw Newberry honor five seniors in the program. The halftime senior honorees were: Barlage, Hopper, Ashante Grimes, Tricia Powell and Kristin Balish.
The Wolves await the results of Saturday’s conference games to determine seeding for the conference tournament.