Carson girls nipped by South Tahoe |

Carson girls nipped by South Tahoe

Darrell Moody

RENO – Carson High’s road to the NIAA State Championships just got a little tougher.

The Senators saw their hopes for a 4A Regional championship go up in smoke Thursday night when South Tahoe’s Cassandra Diaz scored in the third minute of overtime to hand Carson a 2-1 loss at Damonte Ranch High School.

The loss, Carson’s first of the season, dropped Carson to 13-1-4. The Senators meet Galena, a 1-0 loser to Douglas, Saturday at noon in the third-place game which will decide the final state berth in the north.

“Galena is always tough,” Carson coach Randy Roser said. “The team knows they need to win to make state, so they will come in focused.”

The Senators’ defense, which had allowed nine goals coming into the South Tahoe, had some breakdowns according to Roser.

“Our defense finally broke down,” Roser said. “We picked the wrong time to do it. Both of their goals came when the players weren’t marked. The last goal she just ran through. Our back four had trouble tonight.”

Roser was referring to Diaz’s game-winner in the third minute of overtime. Diaz slashed through the slot, took a pass from Becky Bruce and beat Kenzie Tillitt to win it. It was Diaz’s 10th goal of the season.

South Tahoe outshot Carson 7-5 in the second half, and four of the Vikings’ shots were on goal.

Shelbi Spicer opened the second half when she hit the left post on a short-side scoring attempt. Natalie Flynn followed two minutes later with a shot that was just barely high.

Spicer came back in the 55th minute to tie the game, and neither team had a serious scoring threat the rest of regulation.

The only serious threat by Carson in the second half came in the 50th minute when Lexi Nunes-Fenley stopped a Taylor Musselman short-side attempt. Nunes-Fenley finished with six saves, while Tillitt had seven for the Senators.

Carson led 1-0 10 minutes into the match when Ashley Turner fed a nice ball to Musselman who scored from 10 yards out.

The score stayed that way for 45 minutes until Spicer scored her 18th goal of the season.

“It’s great,” South Tahoe coach Clint Lockhart said after the big win. “We started the season with a couple of losses. We were not together at all in terms of everybody being on the same page.

“We’re coming together now. We were undefeated in the second half of the season. The girls are finding their rhythm at the right time.”