Newsome gets rivalry win, hands Bloomingdale first loss
VALRICO - Three years ago, district restructuring separated nearby rivals Bloomingdale and Newsome, but offseason tinkering brought the foes together again this season in Class 5A-District 7. League affiliations mean little to the players — many of whom have played club soccer together since before they were teenagers — when these teams meet. "Of course we always want to win, but Bloomingdale is a big rivalry for us," Newsome junior Taylor Decaire said. "It's definitely an advantage for us because I've been playing (club soccer) with and against these same girls since I was 12. So sure there's a lot of that competitive stuff because we know each other so well." For the second straight year, the regular-season match belonged decisively to the Wolves as Newsome handed the Bulls their first loss of the season, 4-0.The decider for Newsome (10-1-1) came in the 17th minute when a corner kick from Caroline Evers found its way to a waiting Jackie Simpson just on the line of the 18-yard box and the senior sent in a shot to the upper corner. Decaire added a pair of goals in each half, first taking a ball through defenders, drawing out the Bloomingdale keeper and shooting a right-foot screamer. She notched her second by scoring on a header after a deflection from Emily Jones. Jones got her chance in stoppage time, scoring after a scramble for the game's final goal. Bloomingdale (7-1-1) struggled to find chances as a staunch Newsome defense, led by Simpson at stopper and Karli Gutsche at sweeper, limited the Bulls' chances — the best of which came in the 77th minute when Tatiana Hernandez fired a ball off the crossbar. Newsome coach Kelly Townsend said she knew the rivalry would have her team pumped up, and she hopes her team plays with the same intensity the rest of the season. "I think tonight we came together as a team and this is the kind of play we need to have continue," Townsend said. "If we are going to win anything this year, this is what needs to happen."