Girls Soccer: Grove City posts fourth straight winning season

Frank DiRenna
ThisWeek group
Freshman forward Ava Schiff, left, led the Grove City girls soccer team in scoring with 13 goals and three assists. She was named first-team all-league and third-team all-district after helping the Greyhounds post their fourth consecutive winning season.

Despite losing several key players to graduation from its 2019 squad, the Grove City girls soccer team continued its recent success by finishing 9-6-3 overall for its fourth consecutive winning season.

The Greyhounds went 3-2 in the OCC-Ohio Division to finish third behind champion New Albany (5-0) after winning the league title last season at 4-0-1.

“We lost a lot to graduation, especially on the offensive side of the ball, but we had some people step up and accept some challenges at some new positions,” coach Josh Keller said. “I thought we played really well. Our effort was there for most of the year and that’s what you look for.”

Midfielder/defender Kendall Jameson, one of nine seniors in the program, was named first-team all-league and second-team all-district.

Freshman forward Ava Schiff, who led the team in scoring with 13 goals and three assists, was first-team all-league and third-team all-district.

Sophomore forward/midfielder Kayla Jones (8 goals, 4 assists) and senior defender Sophia Tristano were second-team all-league. Senior goalie Madison Evans was special mention all-league and senior midfielder Ava Hurd was honorable mention all-league.

Junior midfielder Reganne Elliott had seven goals and an assist. Others expected to return are juniors Caitlyn Chittum (midfielder), Morgan Dible (defender), Ashleigh Mastilak (goalie), Bella Ransburgh (midfielder), Alissa Schiff (midfielder), Sydney Schuler (midfielder) and Alexis Steinhauser (midfielder) and sophomore Shae Grimm (defender).

“We think we have a good thing going here,” Keller said. “It’s been 11 years. We’re happy where we are.”

Seeded 12th in the Division I district tournament, the Greyhounds lost 3-1 to eighth-seeded Upper Arlington in a district semifinal Oct. 28 after beating ninth-seeded Delaware 2-1 in the second round Oct. 24. Grove City had an opening-round bye.

“It’s the finality of it,” Keller said about the end of the season. “We’ve been doing this since June together in different phases, with COVID, and then the finality of it, it’s over.  And the next day you come to school and there’s no practice after school. That’s always tough to deal with. Only one team is going to win its last game.”

fdirenna@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekFrank

Record: 9-6-3 overall

OCC-Ohio standings: New Albany (5-0), Pickerington North (3-1-1), Grove City (3-2), Gahanna (2-2-1), Westerville Central (1-4), Westland (0-5) 

Seniors lost: Olivia Carson, Macie Dearth, Madison Evans, Ava Hurd, Kendall Jameson, Skyla Sanborn, Jenna Slabaugh, Emily Talbott and Sophia Tristano

Key returnees: Reganne Elliott, Kayla Jones, Ashleigh Mastilak and Ava Schiff

Postseason: Defeated Delaware 2-1; lost to Upper Arlington 3-1 in Division I district semifinal