Lady Highlanders defend home turf against Murphy

Highlands girls varsity soccer team hosted Murphy earlier this month and took the win with a final of 5-2. The Lady Highlanders were victorious despite playing without offensive threat Reese Schmitt, who was out due to a leg injury.

Highlands Gaby Diaz Martinez somersaults over Murphy’s goalie.

Keeping busy on the defensive line was Highlands senior Kaitlyn Doerter (Pictured at the top of the article).

Doerter said she was happy with the win, but felt it wasn’t their best game with some missed opportunities.

Highlands Caroline Woods sends a goal kick deep into midfield.

“I think we could have played better, but the best thing we had going for us was getting the ball from the back up to the front and scoring goals,” she said.

Highlands Addie Westendorf jumps in front of a Murphy player and picks off a pass.

Anchoring the other side of the defensive line is Doerter’s sister, sophomore Abbie Doerter.

Highlands Abbie Doerter keeps the ball moving up the sideline at home.

Abbie said Murphy came at them with speed and good passing, but Highlands was able to keep the pressure off Highlands Goalie Ava Schmitt while the offensive line put points on the board.

Highlands Goalie Ava Schmitt has a wave of Murphy players race her for the ball.

“We could have played better as a team and we were without our best striker, but they only got past us a couple of times,” said Abbie. “Overall, I think we did a good job stopping them.”

Highlands Aislynn Luck centers the ball in front of Murphy’s goal.

Keeping consistent pressure on Murphy’s goal throughout the game were Highlands Gaby Diaz Martinez, Hayley Borino, Aislynn Luck, and Addie Westendorf.

Highlands Hayley Borino chases down a tipped Murphy pass.

Martinez said Murphy had some good passes, but Highlands kept pace with them and were able to pull off the win.

Highlands Julia May Schmitt switches direction while weaving through Murphy players at home.

Following their game against Murphy, Highlands hit the road to take on Swain after spring break and won 3-2. Swain beat Highlands 3-1 when they first played this season on March 17.

Highlands Mac Woods clears the ball up the sideline against Murphy.

The win against Swain puts Highlands’ season record at 7-2-1.

Highlands Brandy Zagal passes under pressure.

Highlands next plays tomorrow at 6 p.m. on the road against Rabun Gap.

Highlands Gabi Diaz Martinez drills a shot on Murphy’s goal.

Highlands Kaitlyn Doerter on a fast break straight towards Murphy’s goal.

From left are Highlands Haley Small and Catelynn Couch trying to stay warm, Caitlin Tingen possibly doing an impression, and an injured Reese Schmitt digging Tingen’s impression.

Article and photos by Brian O’Shea
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