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Tiger sports round-up: Volleyball in final weeks, girls soccer remains winless

After losing five games in a row and tying the sixth, the Newberg High School boys soccer team beat Benson 11-0 on Oct. 1 before winning its second game in a row on Oct. 9 – a 1-0 win on the road at Sherwood. The Tigers (3-6-1, 1-1 Pacific Conference) followed that up with a 3-0 home loss to Forest Grove on Oct. 11, but they had a chance to get back on track Tuesday night after press time.

Newberg hosted rival McMinnville, which came into Tuesday's game at 3-7, 1-1 in conference. After that game, the Tigers travel to Glencoe on Thursday and round out their season with a home game against Century on Oct. 24 and a road game at Liberty on Oct. 28.

Girls soccer's struggles continue

Now the losers of nine games in a row, the NHS girls soccer team is 0-9-1 on the season and 0-2 in conference play, ranked No. 51 in the state out of 52 teams in the 6A classification. Only McKay (0-10-1) is ranked below the Tigers.

Scoring goals seems to be the area in which Newberg is struggling the most, with its last four losses coming in shutout fashion. Its two most recent games were 4-0 defeats at the hands of Forest Grove and Sherwood on Oct. 7 and 10, respectively.

Newberg has four more chances to pick up its first win of the season, all against Pacific Conference foes that sit at or below .500 overall. The first game was on the road at McMinnville on Tuesday night; the final three are at home against Glencoe on Thursday, on the road at Century on Oct. 24 and at home against Liberty on Oct. 28.

Volleyball eyes a conference crown

It's going to take a strong finish, but a Pacific Conference championship is still in play for the NHS volleyball team. The Tigers (13-6, 6-2) are in second place in league behind McMinnville (11-7, 8-1), but they will play the Grizzlies one more time in their final four games.

Newberg is riding a three-game win streak in conference play since it lost to the Grizzlies on Sept. 26, with wins over Glencoe, Liberty and Century. In the Liberty Tournament on Saturday, however, the Tigers went 0-2, losing to Lincoln (12-5, 10-3 Portland Interscholastic League) and undefeated 5A powerhouse Wilsonville.

The Tigers hosted Sherwood (12-7. 6-3) on Tuesday night after press time in a pivotal Pacific Conference duel. After that, a road game beckons on Thursday at Forest Grove (5-12, 1-7) followed by a home game against McMinnville on Oct. 22 and a road game at Glencoe (9-8, 5-3) on Oct. 24.

When the dust settles, whether they end up as conference champions or not, the Tigers are likely on their way to a berth in the 6A postseason. The question remains whether this senior-heavy team will host its opening round game or have to take to the road.

All that will be determined in the coming weeks as Newberg hits the hardwood for a quartet of key matches.

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