|Bluebirds Girls Soccer Dominates Ryle|
|PHOTO: Allen Ramsey, DWCPhoto.com. Highlands senior defender Hannah Hartman sets up for a pass in a recent game at Tower Park. Highlands moved to 14-4 with a 5-0 blanking of Ryle on Saturday.|
Highlands (14-4 overall) showed it is ready to do that with a convincing 5-0 win over the Ryle Lady Raiders (7-9) in Union. Highlands finished the regular season 9-0 in 9th Region play and recorded its 11th shut-out of the season.
"We came out and I think it might have been one of the better games we've played all year," said Alex Dean, Highlands Head Coach. "Before the game, we were talking. We're so close to the post-season. We have to start having that mentality. I think just saying the works kind of encouraged them to come out with even more effort than we've seen recently."
The Bluebirds had 21 shots including 14 on goal to six shots including four on goal for the Lady Raiders. Highlands junior goalkeeper Maggie Hinegardner recorded four saves.
Highlands senior Lindsey Meyer again led the way with one goal and two assists for four points. Meyer has 21 goals and nine assists on the season for 51 points. For her storied career, Meyer has 68 goals and 38 assists for a total of 174 points. Former assistant Stephanie Sandfoss-Graves had 64 goals and 39 assists for a total of 167 career points.
Highlands junior forward Maria Broering had one goal and one assist for three points and junior Lauren Deckert had two assists. Freshman Chloe Bramble and sophomores Kenzie Nehus and Greta Noble had the other Bluebird goals. Nehus is third on the team with seven goals and eight assists for 22 points and Broering has six goals and an assist for 13 points.
"I think we've just been improving every single game working our tails off doing what we need to do to win," said Maria Wiefering, Highlands junior forward. "I think our passes are really good. I think we're just working as a team as a whole and we're all just helping each other."
Highlands concludes the regular season Monday at Tower Park against Lexington Catholic (11-4-2). Game time is 7 p.m.
Highlands Finishes 2-3 in JCVIT:
The Bluebirds are 21-9 after going 1-2 on the second day of the Jefferson County Volleyball Invitational Tournament.
"I think we performed well at the end and at the beginning," said Katelyn Sallee, Highlands Head Coach. "I think the middle was a little weak for us. We definitely had some things we needed to work on and I was pleased with our adjustments we made for the final match of the weekend and am looking for another strong week back home."
Highlands lost to Greenwood, 2-0 (25-23, 29-27) to start the day. Senior Margot Seidel had a strong game finishing with 13 digs, two solo blocks and 17 kills. Junior setter Audrey Graves had 30 assists and 10 digs. Senior Olivia Gessner had 10 digs and freshman CC Shick had two solo blocks.
Highlands then lost 2-1 (14-25, 25-23, 25-21) to South Oldham. Seidel and Shick had 12 kills each and Graves had 34 assists and 12 digs. Seidel also had 20 digs and a solo block. Junior Brooke Biltz and Gessner had 18 and 16 digs respectively. Junior Ava Hockney had three solo blocks, two aces and seven kills.
But the Bluebirds finally broke through to beat Louisville Butler, 2-0 (25-16, 25-21) to finish the day. That marked the 100th win since Sallee took over in 2014.
Seidel had nine kills, one ace and 12 digs. Gessner added 16 digs and an ace with Hockney tallying five aces and eight kills. Junior Rylee Kirschenbaum added nine digs.
"Playing best-of-three is definitely more of a marathon than playing best-of-five," Graves said. "I feel like when we're playing best-of-three it's all in every single point. It's a lot faster. You don't have a break between anything. You really just have to focus on putting in 110 percent on every single ball that you play."
Highlands plays host to Covington Holmes on Monday. Game time is 6 p.m.
St. Xavier (Ohio) Results:
Highlands sophomore Maggie Schroeder again had another strong showing finishing third in the Girls Division I race Saturday at Cincinnati (Ohio) St. Xavier. Schroeder finished third in 19 minutes, 4.46 seconds.
As a team, the Highlands girls finished sixth out of eight teams with 128 points. The Highlands boys finished third in the Division I varsity race with 82 points. Sophomore Will Griffith finished 15th in 17:40.98.
Highlands runs in the Lexington Catholic Invite on Saturday.