ST. PETERSBURG — The change may have come late in the season but for Northeast, it's better late than never. The Vikings took advantage of Lindsey Brown playing on the front line Thursday and cruised to a 3-0 victory over Pinellas Park in the Class 5A-12 semifinals.
Brown, who usually plays defense, scored once and was instrumental in setting up a score to club teammate Kathryn Sexton as the Vikings won for the first time since early this month.
"We feel really comfortable playing with each other on the front," Sexton said. "It completely changed the way our entire team played. This was definitely the best game we've had all season."
Northeast (7-6-1) had several opportunities early in the first half but didn't capitalize until after the water break when Brown received a through ball just past midfield from junior fullback Nicole Harris, carried it down the left side and rifled a left-footed shot past Pinellas Park keeper Alice Sullivan.
Sexton helped give the Vikings a 2-0 lead moments later on a high-arcing cross to sophomore forward Taylor Phillips, who easily chipped it past Sullivan.
In the other semifinal, No. 1 seed Largo exploded for four goals in the first half on its way to an easy 5-0 win over Boca Ciega. Five players scored.
"We wanted to come out with more energy and a better focus on attacking and finishing," Largo coach Dan Flynn said. "We were flat in our last two regular-season games and we talked about having a strong start."