Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Neers Downed by Eagles

The Lady Neers couldn’t overcome injury, illness and a hungry Scott Eagle team tonight as the team went down in straight sets on the road by scores of 25-19, 25-21 and 25-18.  The jumbled line-up looked very strong at times but the ability to finish plagued the team as it has so many times this season. 

Key stats for the night:  Haley Robinson with 6 kills, Amarah Nicholson with 5 kills and 7 blocks, Sarah Sergent with 22 assists and Carson Elliott wearing the libero jersey with 13 digs. 

I’m not sure what it is-whether the girls are too nice or they just tense up when the game gets down to crunch-time.  Whatever it is, I think I came up with the answer tonight.  Last Friday night at the football game, I was standing  just yards away from the SK defensive line as they had New Cath backed up deep into their own territory.  It was almost frightening at times as that line was not going to let New Cath get a single yard.  I heard crunching moaning as the Neer line pummelled the offensive line of New Cath.  The old sports cliché of stepping on their neck was about as accurate as it could be.  With that said, I ran into Coach Marksberry tonight at the UDF gas pumps.  I told him to send the D-line to a volleyball practice to teach them some of that killer instinct I saw the other night…he just chuckled.

Things ratchet up another level as the team travels to Park Hills to play the Pandas on Thursday night.   SK played NDA tough last year at the Joe. 

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Neers Down Demons

Back to the Joe tonight for the 32nd District Trifecta as SK wrapped up 3 games in a row against their 32nd District foes.  Williamstown was on the schedule tonight as t0he Neers were once again without the services of seniors Ellie Smith and Schmee.  Ellie was under the weather and Schmee was banged up after her stunt action last night and will be out for a week or so.  You could see it in her face sitting on the bench that she wasn’t enjoying her unplanned time off. 

After putting together a couple of nights of play where the confidence was growing, the team came out in the first set against the Lady Demons and played….um, bad.  SK trailed by a score of 10-8 early in the first set.  They would start getting things together later in the set and would pull out the 25-18 win after nip and tuck action .  The Neers would settle down in the second and third sets and wallop the Demons by scores of 25-6 and 25-4 as Coach Atwood would get everyone involved in the match.

Stats from the night:
Haley Robinson  8 kills
Amarah Nicholson 7 Kills – 4 Blocks
Rachael Figgins  6 Kills – 3 blocks
MacKenzie Bard 15 assists
Emily Popham 6 aces
The schedule starts heating up next week as SK takes to the road in a couple of tough matches as they play cross county rival Scott on Tuesday followed by a match-up with the paNDAs on Thursday.
Someone keeping things light on the bench.
Fig with a nice pass in the third set. 
Haley with another solid game in the middle. 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

SK Bests Walton in Verona

The Lady Neers took to the road the last two nights for 32nd District action. The team got some confidence going last night following some tough games this past weekend at the Scott Summer Slam. SK bested Grant Count last night in straight sets 25-11, 25-16 and 25-8. The GPS took us to Verona tonight for the rubber floored confines of Walton Verona Elementary School as the high school is undergoing major renovations.

SK got off to a slow start and fell behind early. Problems would get compounded as Iron Woman Kelsey Schmiade went down with an early injury. Schmee would go get checked out at the hospital and early reports sound encouraging. Please keep our girl Schmee in your prayers. Line-up challenges would become even tougher as Ellie Smith was unable to play due to illness. SK was able to dominate WV off of their serve as the Lady Cats had trouble passing the service of Kenzie Bard, Biz Manser and Carson Elliott. Coach Atwood would call on the services of Kayla McDonald to don the yellow libero jersey. The sophomore did a nice job of answering the call. SK was able to get their offense going through their middles as Amarah Nicholson and Haley Robinson were able dominate at the net. SK goes on to win by a final scores of 25-9, 25-22 and 25-13.

Stats from Grant County
Haley Robinson  -  7 Kills, 3 aces
Rachael Figgins -  6 Kills
MacKenzie Bard -  17 assists – 3 aces
Stats from WV
Haley Robinson – 9 kills, 2 blocks
Amarah Nicholson – 7 kills,  3 blocks
Carson Elliott – 19 assists -  4 aces
MacKenzie Bard – 15 assists, 6 aces
Kayla  McDonald – 14 digs
A big shout out to the nice contingent of SK students who made the journey out tonight.  Thank you!

The win puts the Neers at 3-0 in District play. Williamstown will travel to the Joe on Thursday at a special game time of 6:30. Please remember, no candy sales during school hours.  :)

Bard celebrating a SK Block. MF1_2780

Get Well Soon Schmee!!!! MF1_2711

Friday, August 22, 2014

Atwood Battle Goes to Neers at Hot Time in the Joe

The Lady Pioneers opened their volleyball season tonight at home at the Muggy Joe against the Conner Cougars.  The humid conditions were causing the AC to condensate and leak on the floor.  The air was turned off but the Joe turned into a sauna, causing the floor to sweat and get slippery.  Nevertheless, an absolute phenomenal weeknight crowd, including a decent student section, turned out for the contest.  Conner is led by SK Coach Andrea Atwood’s daughter, Deandra, a soph at the Hebron campus. 

The Frosh and JV teams opened up the Tri-match.  The Freshman won in convincing two game fashion.  Sledding got tough for the JV team as they won the first set easily but ended up losing the match in three sets.
After an outstanding preseason that consisted of a 5th place tie at the Bluegrass State Games (out of 84 teams) and strong scrimmage showings against Cooper and Brossart, the girls were ready to get the real season going.  SK showed up where they left off last season as one of the top ranked teams in Kentucky, coming in at 23 in the state coach's poll-a little low in my biased opinion.   

The varsity team, led by a whopping 7 seniors, took to the floor and looked strong in warm-ups.   The girls looked loose and ready to have fun.  The Neers came out and hung a double digit lead on Conner.  Once SK got to 23, they got frozen and tightened up, allowing Conner to come back and tie the score after they led by 23-16.  SK got the final two points they needed but it clearly gave Conner some momentum for the rest of the match.  A back and forth scoring scenario characterized the second set as SK comes back in the end to also win by a 25-23 score.  SK seemed to let up and tighten up more in the third set as they clearly struggled throughout the set, losing by a final of 21-25.  The team seemed to come back and get things back together in the 4th set, preventing the start of a fifth game and pulled out a 25-20 win.

While the Cougars were scrappy and deserves credit for battling the Neers, SK certainly did not play up to their preseason form.  Call it first game jitters but they really seemed to tighten up when they got backed in a corner.  The team has a lot of talent and will have a better showing on Tuesday night when they return to the Joe.  SK was led by Seniors Rachael Figgins,  who posted 10 kills and 6 blocks, Ellie Smith with 8 kills, Carson Elliott with 19 assists and Floorburn Schmee with 15 digs.   
Kenzie celebrates her match winning serve...just a little!  She also made an unbelievable play one time by blasting the ball into the net which allowed Anna Cully to win the point.  Awesome play by the sophomore. 

It is fun watching these three and their antics. MF2_6627

I can't believe she's a senior...great match last night Smallest Fig Hides Behind a Bush. MF2_6488

Atwoods at least smiling before the game.  Great pic of mom and daughter. 


Wednesday, October 30, 2013

#PioneerNation IS REAL!

Dag-gone-it.  That wasn’t the way it was supposed to be.  A great Neer team that worked hard, had talent and was just a great team to be a part of, even as a parent, was supposed to be the first SK girls team to win a volleyball regional.  It didn’t happen.  
A gym full of Neer faithful (and a few painted Titans) showed up late but were 100% behind the Lady Pioneers.  Thank you students, coaches, teachers and administrators who were there.  I know the girls really appreciated it.  Yes, the Pioneer Nation was real tonight and it helped carry the team to a thrilling match.  I kind of questioned the whole school support thing the other night but it was in full force tonight.  Well done.  
SK goes down by scores of 30-28, 25-23, 20-25, and 25-19.  Points and stats don’t really matter that much now but the turning point was definitely the first set where SK led by scores of 16-8 and 23-18 but just couldn’t get the scores that they needed.  North Oldham proved they were the team to beat in the region as they came storming back to take the set.  The high level of energy was quieted and the looseness of the Neers suddenly made things a little tight after the lead was squandered.  BUT, this team did not quit and give up.  They fought to the very end.  The match was a thriller as evidenced by the scores.  Not too often a team scores 95 points and still falls.  The match went on for almost two hours; but dag-gone-it.  Everyone wanted so bad for the girls to be able to hang a banner in the empty spot on the west wall of the gym.  Mary Jo and I were going to be passing out scissors tomorrow night to have the girls cut down the net.  
Coaches Atwood, Hacker, and Marx.  Thank you for the time you spent with our daughters this year and being there for them to have a positive outlet.  So many other “things” they could have be a part of but they were lucky to have you there leading them and teaching them the sport of volleyball.  
Players, thanks for a great season.  I’m bummed the season is over.  Thanks for your dedication and hard work and making this Blog thing so much fun.  When I think back about the season, I think about success on the court (including the one set V against NDA) but I think most everyone will most remember Dig for Depew Night.  That was one of the best experiences I’ve seen at a high school sporting event or any event at SK.  Even though you lost on the court tonight, your good friend Brittany had a major victory in the game of life today as she got word that her leukemia is once again in remission.  That’s what really matters. 
Kaitlin, Sophie and Megan.  You were a great group of seniors for the team.  I wish you the most in your senior year and college experiences.  You will each be missed.  

Thanks to all of the parents and players who have cooked, worked, supplied food etc. to help make the tourney run so smooth. A number of you have gone above and beyond.  For fear of missing someone, I'll just say I really appreciate your efforts. Just one more day!  
I have had a blast this season on the Blog and hope you’ve enjoyed my ramblings and shots.  Thanks for reading!  Marc

Good Luck Seniors!

Thanks Coaches!


Our new friends.  Thanks for your support!

Fun times!
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Thank you Neer Fans!  You were awesome.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Neers With "Titan"-ic Like Game in Opening Round of the 8th Region Tourney

SK hosted opening night of 8th Region Volleyball tourney tonight at the Joe. North Oldham bested Collins in the opening match, although Collins turned out with a late arriving, small, but rowdy cheer section. Take note for later.

Once the Lady Neers took in the first game and got dressed for their match, it was clear that they were relaxed and pumped for their match. Jon Webster did a nice job of getting the team ready for action. Once the Neers took to the floor, it was apparent that they were ready for tourney play as they absolutely dismantled the Carroll County Lady Panthers. Scores for the matches were 25-7, 25-10 and 25-5. An awesome team effort where everyone contributed.  

Some stats for the game, Kaitlin Murray with 7 kills, most of them of the hammer variety, Rachael Figgins had 6 kills and 2 blocks, Sophia Dunn with 30 assists, Ellie Smith with a continued strong serve including 7 aces, Sheemeadee with 10 digs, Amarah Nicholson and Haley Robinson with several unreturnable kills in the middle.

Back to the Collins students. There were about 5 young men who showed up late in the first set of their team’s match. After the Collins match was over, they decided to stay and watch the SK match. Not only did they stay and watch but they filled in behind the 25 church pew quiet SK students who were in attendance for the game. For whatever reason, once they decided to take in the game, these Titan fans decided to start cheering for SK. Not only did they cheer, they cheered loudly. It was one of the funnier things I’ve seen in a while at a high school sporting event. The Collins kids were louder than any group of students we’ve seen at SK volleyball. They definitely provided a nice lesson in school spirit. What was really neat is the SK kids really appreciated the cheering.

I got to thinking on the way home; how cool would it be for the SK student body to show up and actually cheer and support the volleyball team on Wednesday night like they do for football and basketball; like this group of 5 Collins students did. North Oldham is the defending regional champ but if the whole Pioneer Nation thing means anything, it can get behind the girls volleyball team and help push them to a regional title. Pioneer Nation doesn’t mean just supporting more football and boys basketball - does it?  I heard a rumor in the hall the Coach Marksberry was going to require the football team to be at the volleyball game after practice on Wednesday.    

This is an awesome group of student athletes that have a chance to do something no other SK team has done by winning a regional title. Get behind them as they play North Oldham in the Regional Semifinals at 6:45 on Wednesday at the Joe. #PioneerNation #IsItReal

Getting ready before the game.

Always smilin'  Happy B-day Kelsey!

Collins kids started off with a group of 3, were joined by a few SK kids.  Once they started catching on, the other SK Volleyballers joined in.  Neat deal.

DSC_0775 DSC_0806

Aerial Competition


Friends afterwards.

Thanks Collins for the support; come on back now ya hear. 610_0693-2

Monday, October 21, 2013

SK Advances to Regional Tourney

The Lady Neer got 32nd District tourney play underway against the Williamstown Lady Demons. SK wins in straight sets and advances to play Walton Verona on Wednesday night at the Joe at 7:00 in the 32nd District Championship. 

Williamstown came into tonight’s match with only 5 wins on the season.  That didn’t seem to matter as the Demons went toe to toe with the Neers in the first set.  SK wins by a final of 25-17.  SK came out with a lot more energy in the second set and won big by a final of 25-5.  Walton played tough in the third set and made several unbelievable plays as they stayed close early before SK put a wrap on things by a final of 25-10.  Stat leaders Haley Robinson  10 kills,  5 blocks; Ellie Smith 7 kills, 4 blocks, Sophie Dunn posted 28 assists and Kelsey Schmiade had 8 digs. 
The win assures SK a place in the regional tournament that will be held next week at the Joe.  Schedule will be posted after all of the Districts are wrapped up. 

It was a good night for SK sports teams as the boys and girls soccer teams both advanced in regional play.  They boys won in PK's versus Shelby County and the girls took down Anderson County in the late-night cap 1-0. 
Sophie Dunn with one of her assists.

Rachael Figgins winds up for a second set kill.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Neers with Sweep Up on the Hill

The Lady Neers headed to Newport tonight for a match up on the hill with NCC.  NCC celebrated Senior night for their 6 seniors in front of a huge and loud crowd.  I was running late from work and got to the match late in the first set.  When I stepped out of the car, I could hear the cheers roaring from the gym.  I'm like, is this a volleyball game going on? 

In varsity action, the Neers were up for much of the first set and led by as many as 3.  They went up 22-20 and looked poised to win the first set.  The Breds came back and ended up coming back and winning the set by a final of 23-25.  SK has struggled this year finishing when they have had leads or when they had to fight to get out of a hole.  That didn’t happen tonight.  SK came back with a vengeance and won the second set 25-22 and built some nice momentum.  They went into the third set and didn’t let up as they built some nice leads against the Breds before going on to an impressive 25-18 win.  New Cath didn’t’ want to go down on senior night and led for much of the fourth set.  SK trailed by as many as 4 points in the match before they dug in with a can’t lose mentality we haven’t seen in a long time.  They gut out one exciting set by a final of 29-27, winning three straight sets to spoil the Breds senior night.  New Cath is a very strong team with a record that doesn’t show how good and improved over last year that they are. Put it this way, they played Louisville Mercy on the road last night.

Tonight was one of SK’s best matches of the year.  Not just because they won but because they overcame a raucous crowd and took a punch when they got down.   SK has seemed to get nervous in front of some of their recent crowds but they thrived on it tonight.  Coach Atwood showed a little ire at one point which seemed to fire her team up.  It also might have gotten someone else fired up.  Let's just say if our good friend Randall Wagner were still with us today, he would have been yelling, “That’s Terrible!”  I was and my vocal cords are a tad irritated as a result.  Things weren’t going SK’s way but they didn’t get frustrated, they got mad and got a refuse to lose tude.  I thought it was awesome.  The seniors led and the rest of the team followed, just how it is supposed to go.  It was an entire team effort as evidenced by the stats:  Kaitlin “Hammer” Murray had 11 kills and her best service of the season; Haley Robinson had 10 kills, 3 blocks, Ellie Smith also had 10 kills, Rachael  Figgins had 6 kills, Amarah Nicholson posted 8 Blocks.  Sophie Dunn put up 32 assists and Schmee dug 23 Tachikara’s for SK. 

SK finishes the regular season at 25-8.  Sure, that’s impressive but right now, SK is 0-0.  All of the past games at this point really don’t matter a whole lot.  Nice record but that’s not what the original goal that they set for themselves in the beginning of the season.  The regular season teaches lessons and tonight that lesson is that the girls have the ability and talent to reach their goals.  There’s  a reason that the coaches throughout  the Commonwealth have voted the Neers as one of the better teams in the state all year…they are good.  It is time to reiterate that goal and go out and get it girls.  I’ve had a good feeling about this year and if they play like they did tonight, you'll be playing in the state tourney.   

I’m out of clichés.  Here’s a recap of the other games that helped the Neers post a sweep of the Breds. 

Freshman team finished their season with a nice match win with set wins by scores of 21-14 and 21-7.  Avery and Brynn each had 5 kills.    Eve had 7 services points in first game.    Kayla had 8 service points in the second game.    Jessica McDonald 20 assists.  The Frosh Neers had no drop balls in either game. 

The JV  won in 2 by scores of 21-15 and 21-17.  Stat leaders were Kahlee Fuehner with 6 kills; Anna Cully with 5 kills; MacKenzie Bard with 9 assists, all complemented by excellent passing by Maggie Mullins and Kesley Holland.  Nice job by the whole Program tonight. 

Monday, October 14, 2013

SK Finishes District Play at 6-0

The Lady Neers hit the road tonight for their final 32nd District match of the regular season.  The varsity team wrapped up a perfect season in District play as they moved their record to 23-8 overall, 6-0 in District play and 6-1 in Regional play.  The matches marked the Lady Braves version of Volley for the Cure. 

There was no Frosh match-up as the Braves only field JV and Varsity teams this year.  The JV got their matches over in fairly quick fashion by scores of 21-4 and 21-13. 

In varsity play, the girls played with an effort that could be described as lackluster, flat, uninspired.  Pick your own synonym, those were just a few of the kinder descriptions I heard in the stands.  Stat leasders included Kaitlin Murray   11 kills,  3 aces; Haley Robinson   8 kills; Sophie Dunn  30 assists and Kesley Schmiade 14 digs.  

The team will need a better effort as they head to Newport to take on NCC up on the hill.  It is GO TIME girls!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Best of Luck Class of 2014 V-ballers!

Seniors Megan Dischar, Sophie Dunn and Kaitlin Murray played their last regular season game at the Joe tonight in front of another awesome crowd.  The SK volleyballers have really enjoyed some strong crowds over the course of their last several games; thanks to the student body, friends and family.  With Districts and possibly regionals at SK this year, this could pay big dividends when the games really matter in a couple of weeks. 

A tough start on the night as the frosh lose by scores of 19-21 and 7-21.  The JV kept had a nice match as they took down Cooper by scores of 21-11 and 22-20.  Stat leaders, Kahlee Fuehner  with 5 kills, MacKenzie Bard with another strong night including 4 kills and 6 assists, Sarah Sergent with 8 assists and Anna Curly with 7 aces and a whole lot of other service points as the soph has her serve really working. 

Maybe too many emotions going for the varsity girls as they fall to Cooper in three straight; 18-25,  21-25, 13-25.  Cooper spoiled senior night with some strong play at the net and defense.  Varsity stat leaders included Kaitlin Murray with 10 kills  - 3 blocks, Rachael  Figgins with 7 kills and  2 blocks, Sophia Dunn  with 27 assists and Kesley Schmiade with 12 digs and some sore joints, elbows and knees.  Ouch. 

Congrats to all three seniors; I really enjoyed reading your senior recaps.  They were well done.  I know you will be successful in your college and career endeavors.  It has been fun watching each of you at SK and I wish you the best of luck. 

Megan, your care about the team and leadership have been awesome this year.  You are always up and ready to go.  Sophie, your smiles and laughter during the matches are an example of the way high school sports should be played- for fun.  Kaitlin, you are the team’s hammer but the thing that sticks most with me about your season is your passion for Brittany.   The fact that all 3 of you shared so many of the same best memories is awesome; a sign of a positive team. 
Even though your senior night is over, the season certainly isn’t.  It is time to get your team going and go out and fill that space on the wall.  You have the chance to be the senior class  of the first Regional Champ.  Go chase that dream!   Best of luck for the remainder of your senior year.
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