Saturday, January 28, 2023

Kirtland cruises past Cuyahoga Heights

Kirtland used a different strategy in Tuesday's non-conference game against Cuyahoga Heights and it resulted in an offensive explosion of sorts.

The Hornets spread the ball around and six different players scored goals in a 6-0 win over the Redskins.

“We played great as a team today,” said senior captain Lindsay Ward, who scored one of the goals. “We decided to switch our line up a little bit so we had three in the middle and three up top instead of two and four. We adjusted well to the new formation and it really opened up the middle of the field so Hannah Vouk could control the ball in the middle and feed runners on the sides.”

Vouk added a goal as did Grace Powers, Lidia Rodin, Danielle Davis and Maya Zovko.

Davis’ goal came late in the first half off a Vouk free kick.

“She played a beautiful ball right near the goal and I was in the right spot at the right time,” Davis said. “I followed the ball towards the post and took a shot at it and it went in.”

The Hornets had little trouble controlling possession and finding scoring opportunities.

“From Maggie Kadas all the way in the back to Grace, Maya and Lidia up top, we were able to control the ball, make smart runs, and get some shots off,” Ward said. “I scored by recognizing no one was defending the middle and Hannah Vouk gave me a pass I could run on to then I cut around a defender and got my shot off.”

The Hornets improved to 5-1-2 overall and have outscored their opponents, 29-6.

Kirtland advanced to the Division III Final Four last season but graduated a large senior class.

Ward is one of the veterans of the squad and she sees a lot of potential in this year’s team.

“We graduated a long list of girls but every girl who steps on the field has earned their position on the field,” she said. “We have some big names to live up to, my sister (Hallie Ward) being one of them, and each game everyone brings their best to keep the program successful. We have a ton of talent on this team, so it's really cool to have the respect of such great athletes. Grace and I work well together making sure the team is focused on our goal to win, but the team also bonds together off the field. In my opinion, that's the greatest feeling as a captain.”

Kirtland hosts Geneva on Thursday. 

Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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