Coach Todd Riley didn’t have to say a lot about the 2012 game with Newark.
Zanesville led its rivals 3-1, only to see the Wildcats come back for a 3-3 tie.
At the Evans Athletic Complex on Thursday, the Lady Devils never trailed in a 3-1 victory that saw them out-shoot Newark 12-3 in the second half.
“We were devastated last year. It left a bad taste in our mouth,” said senior midfielder Brooke Davy, who scored one of the goals for Zanesville (1-1). “We really had a reason to come out and beat them.”
“We had to have a chip on our shoulder,” added senior midfielder Callie Hansgen, who had an assist.
Things started slowly for the Lady Devils before they finally got going in the final 10 minutes of the first half.
Sophomore midfielder Kylie Mercer’s 30-yard direct kick slipped past Newark goalie Amanda Smith — who turned in a stellar effort on the night — with 10:32 to go for a 1-0 lead. With 3:16, Davy’s shot just to the right of the goal went in as the Lady Devils led 2-0 at halftime.
Newark’s Meghan Roche got the Wildcats back in it at 38:24 of the second half when she deftly deposited a 25-yard shot from the right side just over leaping goalie Destiny Johnson to make it 2-1. But with 31:12 left, Hansgen made a nice cross to freshman Karissa Weekley, who blasted it home from about 10 yards out for the final margin.
“I was happy to have her score. She assisted me in the last game,” Hansgen said. “She’s going to be really, really good. We found our width more (in the second half) and won more 50-50 balls. I think we wanted it more than them in the end.”
“We talked about putting teams away when we get ahead,” Riley said. “We’re still figuring out ways to do that, with a lot of new faces in different places. We had a lot of good chances and we have to put them away, but their keeper had a really good game.”
Smith had 15 saves for Newark.
Riley said Zanesville finally put things together the final 10 minutes of the first half and for most of the second half was nice. Johnson had eight saves, most of them in the first half.
“We were trying to find the right combination, so that we could attack out of the back,” Riley said.
“We’ll get it together,” Davy said. “We’re better as a team off the field this year.”
“Everyone is getting to know each other; we’ve been doing a lot of team bonding things,” Hansgen said.
Riley said the Lady Devils had extra motivation beside last year’s result and the fact it was Newark.
“It’s a Division I Central District team, and we have to play well against those teams so we can get a good seed in the tournament,” he said.