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ANCHORAGE - This could be Lindsey Kato's best birthday present yet.
The Juneau-Douglas defender, who celebrated her 16th birthday on Thursday, and the rest of the Crimson Bears' soccer team outscored the Bartlett Golden Bears, 3-2, at Anchorage Football Stadium in the Alaska School Activities Association State Soccer Championship quarterfinals.
The battle of the Bears kicked off with offensive domination from JDHS as it kept Bartlett goalkeeper Diane Collins busy. Juneau-Douglas broke through in the 16th minute when senior Monica Daugherty ripped off a shot for a goal.
Daugherty doubled the score five minutes later after her corner kick bounced off Collins and fell into the net.
In the 35th minute, sophomore Sarah Christianson passed to Margaret Sekona who put the Bears up 3-0 before halftime.
"We took on an excellent first half," Juneau coach Colin Barton said. "We created a lot of chances."
In the second half, Bartlett upped the pressure as Lauren McCoy scored in the 47th minute.
The Golden Bears got another break as the referee awarded them a penalty kick following a tripping call. Bartlett's Christina Copus took the kick but Crimson Bears goalie Ida Gaustad made the initial save and stopped the rebound to deny the Golden Bears a goal.
Bartlett didn't miss when awarded a second penalty kick, through, as Sierra Barringer scored late in the game to make the score 3-2.
Barringer's goal came too late, however, as the Crimson Bears earned the win.
Kato couldn't have been happier.
"It was a nice birthday present to win today," Kato said. "We came into this game trying to stay positive. Win or lose, we just wanted to play 110-percent. Our focus was possession and working together as one whole unit."
JDHS faces the South Anchorage Wolverines today at noon at Anchorage Football Stadium.
"We will have to go 100-percent from the start to have a chance against South," Barton said. "South is a good team, but we are a good team as well. It should be a very good and interesting game."