By: Tara Blue
The girls’ soccer team was finally able to host a home game against the Osage Indians on Monday, May 6th after the track and field construction brought a halt to their home game schedule on Thursday, April 11th. The Southern Boone School District says they coordinated with the construction company to pause the track surface project to ensure that the girls’ soccer team could host a home game before the end of the season.

#12 Abby Bieghler battles to regain control of the ball

The JV Eagles defeated the Indians 1-0 after a shot by #20 Rylie McKee sent the ball right over the head of the Osage goalie.

#1 Lillian Brooks kicks the ball over her opponents’ heads

#32 Ava Leninger controls the ball

The Varsity struggled after many failed attempts to score, and although they lost 0-1, they won the hearts of attendees.The game featured “Pink Out” Cancer Awareness, as players, managers, and coaches honored cancer victims and survivors during the starting line-up presentation.

Before the start of the varsity game, players honored cancer survivors and victims with a pink balloon release.

Playing goalie, #99 Senior Claire Pickett. Claire honored her grandfather Wes Weber, a prostate cancer survivor of 2023 and 2024.

#1 Freshman Lillian Brooks honored her mother Jenny Brooks, a colon cancer survivor from a 2021 diagnosis and a 2023 re-occurrence. Photo courtesy of Shawley Photography

#16 Sophomore Lanie Scheer honored her aunt Tami Avery, a 14-year breast cancer survivor since March 2010.

#32 Junior Ava Leininger played in memory of her grandfather Steve Leininger, a brain cancer victim from the Fall of 2023. He was represented by his son Matt Leininger who is Ava’s father. Photo courtesy of Shawley Photography

#33 Senior Josey Uhrig honored her grandmother Roberta McKee and her sister Cleo Uhrig. Roberta is a 2012 breast cancer survivor and Cleo is a 2017 survivor of osteosarcoma.

#15 Sophomore Adah Zagorac played in memory of her grandmother Jeanne Zagorac, a 2017 victim of breast cancer who was represented by her daughter-in-law Jennifer Zagorac, who is Adah’s mother.

#19 Junior Aubrey Quinn honored her family friend Renee Nichols Christopher, a recent 2023 breast cancer survivor.

#24 Sophomore Lanie Purvis honored her grandmother Cecilia Brigance, a lung and breast cancer survivor from 2017 who was represented by her daughter Melinie Purvis, and her aunt Melinda Brigance, a Stage 4 Melanoma survivor from May of 2020.

#25 Freshman Caitlin Campbell played in memory of her grandfather Joe Lee Herigon, a 2010 victim of lung cancer. He was represented by his daughter Leanne Campbell who is Caitlin’s mother.

Team Manager Freshman Mason Baker managed in memory of his grandmother Kathy McDonald, an ovarian cancer victim from 2019. She was represented by Casey Baker, who is Mason’s mother. Photo courtesy of Shawley Photography

Members of the Sadie Robinett Family were also in attendance. Sadie Robinett was a 15-year-old Freshman at Southern Boone High School who lost her courageous battle with leukemia on January 22nd, 2024.

Family members of Sadie Robinett released a balloon in her memory

Coach Crystal Branch served as Southern Boone P.E. teacher for 24 years and was also a School District Board Member when she lost her fight to cancer on February 24th, 2024. Crystal Branch’s family was in attendance and donated $50,000 to the Buddy Pack Program which provides free meals and snacks for students to take home at the end of each week.

Photo courtesy of Shawley Photography

The team also recognized their graduating seniors.

Senior Josey Uhrig. Courtesy of Shawley Photography

Senior Gabe Montgomery. Courtesy of Shawley Photography

Senior Andrew Pridemore. Courtesy of Shawley Photography

Senior Jessica Brookshire. Courtesy of Shawley Photography

Senior Natalie Bennett. Courtesy of Shawley Photography

Senior Abby Bieghler. Courtesy of Shawley Photography

Senior Claire Pickett. Courtesy of Shawley Photography

Special thank you to Bern Bonderer, Matt Sharp, and Shawley Photography for contributing to this article.


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