Lincoln East senior Briley Hill dribbles through the North Star defense in early-season action at Seacrest Field. Photo credit: Steve Marik/

Girls State Soccer: Players To Watch


The Class A and B girls state soccer tournaments begin this week at Morrison Stadium on the campus of Creighton University in Omaha. It’s an eight-day event that kicks off with a 10 a.m. Class A quarterfinal between No. 2 seed Gretna and No. 7 Kearney on Wednesday.

Here are players to watch for both tournaments.

Class A girls

McKenna Rathburn, Junior, Lincoln Southwest: The No. 1 seed of the Class A girls soccer state tournament is undefeated Lincoln Southwest (15-0), and McKenna Rathburn leads the Silver Hawks on the pitch with 26 points. She’s scored 11 goals and four assists. According to MaxPreps, Rathburn has two two goals in four contests this season. 

Kennadi Williams, Freshman, Lincoln Southwest: A young player making an impact for the undefeated Silver Hawks is Kennadi Williams, who has seven goals and six assists. Williams, the daughter of Nebraska women’s head coach Amy Williams, is also coming off a strong basketball season where she helped Southwest make the Class A state tournament as the point guard. 

Sarah Weber, Senior, Gretna: Nebraska soccer commit Sarah Weber is lighting up opponents this season for the No. 2-seeded Gretna Dragons (18-1). Weber has an extraordinary 44 goals and 29 assists for 117 points this season. According to MaxPreps, she’s scored five goals in a game twice — in 16-0 blowout wins against Omaha Northwest and Omaha Bryan.

Savannah DeFini, Junior, Gretna: Gretna is having an amazing season, and Savannah DeFini is a big reason. DeFini has 62 points this season with 23 goals and 16 assists. Her highlight of the season might be an eight-goal performance against Omaha Northwest on April 16.

Kayma Carpenter, Sophomore, Lincoln East: Leading the No. 3-seed Lincoln East Spartans (15-1) into the state tournament is sophomore Kayma Carpenter, who has recorded a team-high 62 points this season. Carpenter leads the team in goals with 29 and has dished out four assists.

Briley Hill, Senior, Lincoln East: Nebraska soccer commit Briley Hill is a tough and steady piece to the Spartans’ team. She has 39 points for the season and has scored 15 goals with nine assists.

Haley Peterson, Senior, Lincoln East: Lincoln East’s second Husker soccer commit, Haley Peterson, is an integral part to the team as she has 31 points. Her 12 goals rank third on the team while her seven assists are tied for second. 

Gracie Haneborg, Senior, North Platte: The North Platte Bulldogs (15-4) will come to Omaha as the No. 4 seed. The team is lead by all-everything senior Gracie Haneborg, who has 81 points with 33 goals and 15 assists. According to MaxPreps, her season-high in goals, six, came in a lopsided win over Gering on April 20.

Kaitlyn Evans, Junior, North Platte: A double-digit goal scorer and assister for North Platte is junior Kaitlyn Evans, who has recorded 12 goals and 10 assists so far this season. 

Clancy Brown, Freshman, North Platte: For a first-year player, Clancy Brown of North Platte is doing really well. Brown is third on the team in points with 32 and has 12 goals and eight assists.

Olivia Heinert, Junior, Omaha Marian: Leading the way for the No. 5-seeded Omaha Marian Crusaders (14-3) is junior Olivia Heinert, who has a team-high 30 points from 12 goals and six assists. According to MaxPreps, Heinert has two hat tricks — they came in wins against Omaha Northwest and Lincoln Pius X.

Emma Prososki, Junior, Omaha Marian: If opponents key in on Olivia Heinert, Emma Prososki is talented enough to take advantage. Prososki, a junior, has 21 points on the season with nine goals and three assists.

Allie Napora, Senior, Papillion-La Vista South: The Titans of Papillion-La Vista South — the state tournament’s No. 6 seed at 13-4 on the season — are led by 18-goal scorer Allie Napora. The senior also has six assists. She has a six-goal game under her belt from a big win over Bellevue West.

Laina Souerdyke, Sophomore, Papillion-La Vista South: A talented sophomore that has helped the Titans to a 13-4 record is Laina Souerdyke, who has 40 points on the season. She’s scored 17 goals and six assists. In a win over Omaha Bryan, she netted five goals.

Savanna Solomon, Sophomore, Papillion-La Vista South: A young Papillion-La Vista South squad has benefitted from having another talented sophomore, Savanna Solomon, on the pitch. Solomon has 26 points with 10 goals and six assists.

Harley Straka, Freshman, Kearney: The top scorer for the No. 7-seeded Kearney Bearcats (12-5) are led by a first-year player in Harley Straka. Straka has 30 points on the season with 15 goals. 

Kierstynn Garner, Junior, Kearney: One player that does just about everything on the soccer pitch is junior Kierstynn Garner, who leads the team with 36 points. She’s second on the squad in goals with 13 and has the most assists with 10.

Campbell Zimmers, Senior, Millard North: The leading scorer for the No. 7-seeded Millard North Mustangs (11-7) is its senior leader, Campbell Zimmers. Zimmers has a team-best 41 points with 18 goals and five assists. Twice this season she’s scored four goals in a game. 

Sena Ahovissi, Senior, Millard North: Another senior leader for Millard North is Sean Ahovissi. Ahovissi has 34 points with 16 goals and two assists this season for the Mustangs.

Class B girls

Cece Behrens, Senior, Omaha Skutt Catholic: The Omaha Skutt Catholic SkyHawks are the No. 1 seed of the Class B girls state tournament, and senior Cece Behrens is a major reason why. Behrens has scored 75 points this season with 33 goals and nine assists. She’s scored three or more goals in a game six times. 

Cady Bettsworth, Senior, Omaha Skutt Catholic: Second on the team in total points with 29, Cady Bettsworth is one of Skutt’s top players. She’s scored nine goals and is tied for the team lead in assists with 11.

Reese Borer, Sophomore, Norris: The No. 2-seeded Norris Titans (18-0) are unbeaten, and they have a host of players to account for on any given night. One of them is sophomore Reese Borer, who leads the team in goals with 17. She’s tied for the most points on the squad with 38 and has four assists, too. 

Molly Ramsey, Senior, Norris: With 16 goals and six assists, Norris’ senior Molly Ramsey is a handful to account for on the soccer pitch for opposing defenses. Ramsey has scored four goals in two games this season — against Seward and Omaha Roncalli Catholic.

Madison Smith, Senior, Omaha Duchesne Academy: Omaha Duchesne Academy (15-3) is the No. 3 seed of the Class B tournament, and Madison Smith is leading it into Omaha. Smith is the Cardinals’ leader in points with 56 and has 24 goals and eight assists. 

Libbie Brezenski, Sophomore, Columbus Scotus: Leading the pack at Columbus Scotus is sophomore Libbie Brezenski. Brezenski is the top point-scorer for the No. 4-seeded Shamrocks (13-4) with 65. She has 30 goals and five assists. 

Jamison Wahl, Sophomore, Lincoln Lutheran/Raymond Central: The No. 5 seed of the Class B girls tournament is Lincoln Lutheran/Raymond Central (12-3), and its led by sophomore Jamison Wahl. Wahl has 42 points with 18 goals and six assists.   

Sierra Springer, Junior, Lincoln Lutheran/Raymond Central: With 18 goals and five assists, junior Sierra Springer is one of the Warriors’ top players. She’s had a five- and a four-goal game this season. 

Elizabeth Rosenthal, Junior, Omaha Mercy: The Omaha Mercy Monarchs (14-5) are the No. 6 seed of the Class B girls tournament. Mercy is led by junior Elizabeth Rosenthal, who has 13 goals and six assists. 

Citlali Prado, Sophomore, Lexington: The Lexington Minutemaids are headed to Omaha as the No. 7 seed of the Class B girls state tournament. Leading the way is sophomore Citlali Prado, who has a team-high 34 points with 16 goals and two assists.

Abigail Schwarz, Senior, Omaha Roncalli Catholic: The Omaha Roncalli Catholic could make things interesting in the Class B state tournament if its top player, senior Abigail Schwarz, plays well. Schwarz is the top point-scorer for the No. 8-seeded Crimson Pride with 72 points. She’s scored 28 goals and owns 16 assists.

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