"It's not how you start. It's how you finish."
The Voyagers' long, strange trip ended Thursday night after topping the visiting Ogden Raptors, 7-1, to sweep the best-of-3 Pioneer League Finals.
Great Falls finished the regular season winning nine of their final 11 games, then won five of six postseason games. The White Sox's short-season affiliate was in last place at 2011's midpoint.
"We got rolling at the right time," Newman said. "We talked at orientation today about going ahead early and making a statement, trying to take care of business today. These guys responded; they have done it all year long."
The Voyagers, the North Division second-half champions, secured their first crown since 2008 -- they fell in the first round the past two seasons -- and the second in their nine-year history. Ogden has lost in the Finals in back-to-back seasons.
"It's really surreal," said starter Blair Walters. "It's kind of shock that it happened, last to first."
Walters, who completed 5 2/3 two-hit, scoreless frames in his club's postseason-opening win last Friday, allowed a run on four hits over six innings. The 21-year-old lefty fanned seven.
"He wasn't the Pioneer League Pitcher of the Year for no reason," Newman said. "To come home and have a one-game lead with him on the mound, that gave us a lot of confidence."
Walters went 2-0 with a 0.77 ERA in the postseason after compiling a 9-0 record and 4.03 ERA during the regular season. The White Sox's 11th-round draftee in June has yet to suffer a defeat as a pro.
"This was awesome," said Walters, who estimated he threw 90 pitches, 15 over his typical limit. "It has been a great first four months. It's kind of like of a fairytale for baseball the way it has worked out."
Raptors starter Derek Cone was charged with five runs -- three earned -- on seven singles. Cone, who left with two outs in the fifth, struck out four.
Eight different Voyagers batters collected one hit while the ninth, Kevan Smith, went 3-for-4 to lift his postseason batting average to .478. He amassed seven hits in nine Championship Series at-bats and also keyed Tuesday's Game 1 win.
"Kevan carried us," Newman said.