The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Sports

October 9, 2013

Jon Gerardi's high school soccer column: Northumberland Christian's Newbury joins century club

Every senior athlete wants to make his or her final year a memorable one.

Maybe they're chasing a record or it's capturing that elusive district title that always eluded them.

For some, it's capturing a milestone that puts them into a special class all by themselves.

It was sometime probably early in the week that Northumberland Christian coach Jonathan Rees finally told Zach Newbury he was closing in on 100 career goals.

It wasn't necessarily a surprise -- it surely didn't sneak up on anyone -- but Rees didn't want it to become a huge distraction for Newbury.

So once he scored his 97th career goal, Rees let him know so that he could make sure his parents could attend the game when he'd hit the 100 career milestone.

Coming into the year, Newbury stood at 80 career goals and many -- including Rees and Newbury -- definitely knew he would make a run at it.

"It seemed extremely likely Zach would get his 100th goal sometime this year. We didn't want it to be a distraction, so we didn't tell Zach exactly how many he needed until he was within three," Rees said.

Standing at 98 career goals as he played Walnut Street Christian two Fridays ago, the senior Warrior made it a night to remember for all those in attendance as he netted No. 100 with a nice hat trick in a 6-0 shutout win.

For Newbury, he stands in some unusual company as he's one of just two Northumberland Christian players to have 100 career goals, joining Ron Romine (2006), who tallied 133.

"It has been such a privilege to be Zach's coach. Not only does he do so many things so well on the soccer field, he is such a great guy to have around. Even though he's been the leading scorer in the league for three straight years, he's so humble," Rees said. "It seems like a lot of athletes today let their success go to their head and look down on others, or try to act cool. Zach's always just been himself on and off the field with his quiet personality, and he's very respectful of his teammates, coaches, opponents and officials. I was so proud of Zach when he scored his 100th (goal) because of what kind of person he is and because of the way he has carried himself over the years."

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