NEW PORT RICHEY — Leah Mitchell did a cartwheel with a two-game lead and her River Ridge teammates in command.
Life was good.
But these are the playoffs, and Newsome wasn't simply going to pack up and go home. When the Wolves battled to take Game 3, a comeback and an upset seemed possible.
The lost game proved to be a minor setback as River Ridge snapped out of its funk and walked away Wednesday night defeating Newsome 25-17, 25-15, 25-27, 25-19 in a Class 5A, Region 2 quarterfinal.
"I think everyone got a little cocky," Mitchell said. "We thought (Game 3) would be as easy as the first two games, but it wasn't."
Newsome (12-4) ended its season with the program's second playoff berth.
The Royal Knights (24-4) overcame a ton of unforced errors but still seized control, jumping out by several points in the first two games.
Then in Game 3, Newsome grabbed a 3-2 lead on a kill by Jennifer Worth. The Wolves went up by as many as 10 with an 18-8 lead thanks to strong play from Hillary Byrd, Jonni Raga and Nikki Doehrmann.
River Ridge stormed back to take the lead at 24-23. Newsome grabbed the lead for good at 25-24 on a kill by Byrd.
"It's nice to see we can come back to tie the score," River Ridge coach Heidi Castelamare said. "That shows we have a lot of character."