By Evan Grice
There’s good ways to open up district play, and then there’s what the No. 12 Piedmont Lady Wildcats did Tuesday night against Western Heights.
A five goal offensive blitz in the first half was too much for the Lady Jets to handle, as Piedmont opened the district season with a commanding 9-1 victory at Stout Field.
It didn’t hurt matters that the Lady Wildcats outshot the Lady Jets 27-1 in the game.
“We need to get better connecting with our passes in the midfield,” Piedmont coach Brad Brucker said. “We’re still pretty sloppy with too many turnovers. There were some chances we didn’t finish as well tonight. Obviously we were much more talented then they (Western Heights) were, and that’s going to change over the course of the season.”
“It wasn’t our cleanest game of the season, but the good thing was we got a lot of kids some playing time,” Brucker added. “That’s very important for their development, and we need to get the younger girls developed.”
Western Heights mounted a slight comeback in the second half, scoring the opening goal to make it 5-1 at the 35:12 mark of the second, but the game was long decided before that goal was scored.
Logyn Williams got the Lady Wildcats back on track moments later with a goal to make it 6-1 with 34:01 left in the game.
Several Lady Wildcats got on the score sheet in the game, including Julia Grimes, who registered a hat trick on the night.
Grimes got the first goal of the game for the Lady Wildcats less than eight minutes into the game on a quick shot which made it 1-0.
Just a minute later it was 2-0, as Escobar Georgi nabbed her first goal of the night.
Grimes would strike again for her second goal of the evening at the 22:43 mark of the first half, before Jade Johnson got her first goal of the season with 7:44 left before halftime to make it a 4-0 advantage for the Lady Wildcats.
Bianca Cardenas then got on the board with a goal at the 1:44 mark before the half ended to send the Lady Wildcats into the dressing room up 5-0.
“I thought Bianca was really good tonight,” Brucker said. “They gave her a lot of time in the middle and she was just carving it up out there. Julia (Grimes) also had a really strong game out there the way she was consistently putting shots on frame. And she ended up with a hat-trick because of it.”
Grimes collected her hat trick with 20:52 left in the second half to make it 7-1, before Madison Lybarger collected the goal which gave Piedmont an 8-1 lead over Western Heights.
Georgie then finished off the scoring with the ninth goal of the game for the Lady Wildcats.
Kelsey Meier got the win in net for the Lady Wildcats on the evening.
Piedmont (3-1) will travel to play in the Sabercat Classic this weekend at Southmoore High School, with games beginning on Friday morning at 9 a.m. against Southmoore and 12:30 p.m. against Putnam City High School.
“I want us to play well and stay healthy this weekend,” Brucker said about the tournament. “If we can do those things, then it will be successful for us. Things aren’t clicking for us offensively and we need to work on some things, especially passing. If we can do that then we’ll be alright.”