Scissor-kicks and strong serves

Scissor-kicks+and+strong+serves

Tommy McEvilly, Staff Writer

Despite most Bloomington South sports programs only being about a week into their seasons, several Panther teams have come out roaring. On August 13, both the girls’ soccer and boys’ tennis teams showed up and showed out, utilizing the competition and drive to take home wins.

After a successful 7-2 win against Jasper this past Saturday, the girls’ varsity soccer was determined to keep the ball rolling in their game against Martinsville. The team has already found their groove and is looking forward to a successful season, with the help of a tightly bonded, passionate trio of captains including seniors Riley Lukens and Hope Gummere and junior Clara Voskuil.

The Panthers had early concerns during the preseason due to the departure of key seniors, including 2017-2018 captains Audrey Cadag and Brynne Newland. However, Lukens explained that “we’re shifting our dynamics to adjust to the difference.”

While many adjustments  were made during the summer, Lukens noted that one of the most important changes to the team’s strategy involved how the team scored goals.

Goal scoring came with ease to the Panthers last year, as rising junior Gaelle Wells, a Mississippi State commit, was a key scorer on the offensive end. This year, the Panthers are trying to create a game plan without Wells as the 37 total varsity-goal-scorer decided to forgo her South soccer eligibility to  play for the prestigious Soccer Development Academy.

“Last year the strategy was basically just working the ball and sending it downfield to Gaelle,” Lukens said.

Because Wells has decided not to play for South this year, the team is “learning to play more fluidly – more as a team,” Lukens said.

Another big factor in the team’s success could be comradery, as “everyone is friends with everyone,” Voskuil said.

Voskuil believes this should allow the team to “be very connected and successful this season.” Although the team plans to take their season one game at a time, they hope to take home wins throughout conference and their post-season. The girls will be driving down to Evansville this Saturday for a competition against the Evansville North Huskies.

Not only have the girls had a strong start to their season, but the boys’ tennis team is sharing in similar success with a 5-0 win against Columbus East last night.

After a long, scorching summer of practices, the boys were very excited to return to the courts with some newfound leadership. After the  graduation of talented senior Konner Shapiro, the Panthers have been able to find guidance from seniors Calvin Prenkert, Holt Henke and Dexter Wu-Corts. Although the team worked hard to find a new identity this summer in the wake of Shapiro’s departure,  sophomore John Beggs is confidently assured that what the team lost in Shapiro has been made up for by the seniors after a lot of hard work this summer.

Other than the seniors, other returnees to the varsity line-up this year include juniors Daniel Borhi and Andy Chang and sophomore Ethan Ulhs. A new addition to the varsity lineup will be Borhi’s brother, sophomore Marcell Borhi. Despite not being able to play in the Columbus East match due to missing the minimum practice requirements,  Daniel and Marcell have still brought their talents and passions to the team during preseason practices.

Although they are likely to appear as number one and two singles respectively throughout the majority of the season, last night’s contest allowed for Prenkert and Chang to step up and take home wins in their singles matches. This versatility and ability to step up could be imperative to the teams success in the postseason.

“[I] feel great about the fact that we can come together,” Beggs said.

This shared sentiment across the team should hopefully contribute to a winning season for both the JV and varsity squads. The boys will be in action again tonight against the Bedford North Lawrence Stars.