Salem girls win River Ridge soccer, host Region 4D tourney game today

Edwards(#14) battles the Christiansburg keeper for a corner kick. PHOTOS BY BRIAN HOFFMAN
Salem’s Lily Barnes(#1) scored the first goal on this kick in Saturday’s win.

The Salem High girls’ soccer team will open Region 4D play today with a home game against Liberty Christian Academy. The Spartans will play at 2:30 pm at Spartan Field prior to a girls-boys lacrosse doubleheader.

Salem comes in with an 11-3-2 record following their championship effort in the River Ridge District tournament. The Spartans beat Blacksburg Monday in the RRD final at Spartan Field, 2-0, for their fourth straight district or conference championship.

“The seniors have won the conference or district championship every year,” noted Salem coach Josh Jones.

Salem opened the district tournament with an 8-0 win over Pulaski County last week. Lily Barnes had three goals and an assist  while Ellie Laub, Evyn Magenbauer, Haley Woodward, Sarah Mowbray and Kenzie Smith had one each.

On Saturday afternoon at Salem High the Spartans beat Christiansburg, 3-0. Barnes broke a scoreless tie with a goal just before the half Mallory Edwards and Rachel Massey scored second half goals. Edwards, Massey and Magenbauer all had assists.

On Monday the Spartans played host to Blacksburg in the final. Edwards and Shelby Marlman scored first half goals to give the Spartans the lead before the second half was washed out by a thunderstorm. However, the game was official by that point so Salem was awarded the championship.

The Spartans enter the Region 4D tournament as the fourth seed behind top-seeded Jefferson Forest, Blacksburg and Bassett. If the Spartans win today they would play the Jefferson Forest-Charlottesville winner on Tuesday of next week in the regional semifinal. If Jefferson Forest wins, as expected, the Cavaliers would host the Spartans in a rematch of last year’s state championship game. Since only two teams from the regional advance to the state tournament, the loser would be eliminated from post-season play.

“It’s a shame we’d play them in the regional semifinal, but at this stage everyone is going to be good,” said Jones.

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