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Friday, August 20, 2010

School days...schools play


FRIDAY'S EDITION OF CARDINAL COUPLE:

-Key high school match ups this weekend

-UofL women's soccer tonight

-Three Sissies goes today at Ellis Park

The chant on the Assumption High School campus must sound something like "We're number two...no check that...we're number three." as the Rockets have been ranked the #2 volleyball team in the nation..but #3 in Kentucky. Talk about a tough local crowd...Assumption sits behind St. Louis St. Joseph in Volleyball Prep's top 100 rankings and the Kentucky Volleyball Coaches Association has the Bardstown Road school behind Mercy and Sacred Heart here in the commonwealth. For what its worth, Volleyball Prep has Sacred Heart at #40 nationally and Mercy checks in at #74 in the nation.

Assumption returns four all state performers from last year's team and five Rocket volleyball players are already committed to colleges...including Jeni Houser (Notre Dame) and Jackie Napper (Kentucky)

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The APPLE TOURNAMENT field hockey final will match up Sacred Heart vs. Kentucky Country Day. Sacred Heart breezed thru their semifinal game against Male 9-0 and KCD topped Ballard 4-2. In consolation game action, Mercy downed Eastern 3-1 and Assumption rolled past Presentation 5-0.

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Lest we get too caught up in local area high school sports, let's not forget that the UofL women's soccer team will be in action Friday night against Eastern Kentucky University. The Cards are looking to rebound from last year's disappointing season and head coach Karen Ferguson Dayes has recruited well and has some very good and experienced players returning. they teams will kick it around at Cardinal Park at 7 p.m.

Field hockey has an exhibition game tomorrow against Kent State at 1 p.m. at Trager Field. Admission to both events is free.

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Finally, a bit of horse racing...THREE SISSIES goes in the second race at Ellis Park today. She'll face 11 competitors in a $10,500 maiden claiming race for 3 year old and up fillies and mares over 6 1/2 furlongs. She's been working lights out for trainer Jeffery Sheets and will have the services of rider Sal Gonzales. She's morning line listed at 8-1 odds...but if she breaks out of the gate like she's been working...she could surprise at a price. Let's just hope no one claims her..a risk you take when you run 'em at the claiming level. We think she's got a great shot at breaking her maiden today and winning. And, she's no sissy...either.

Santa Anita Race Track is replacing their synthetic surface and going back to dirt for the winter-spring meet that starts in December. Trainer complaints about the Pro-Ride surface and the hard time it has draining water sparked the move.

The safety concerns are a matter of huge debate among California trainers and owners. Jockeys have their opinions also about the surface. We asked local Churchill Downs rider Vic Arterdia..who has worked horses at Santa Anita and Del Mar to compare surfaces and he gave us a beauty...

"The artificial stuff is like driving on gravel. That stuff can sting when it comes flying back at you. It's like someone throwing pebbles at you when your going 30 miles an hour...and sometimes it will clog up a horse's nostrils and he has trouble breathing by the end of a race. With dirt, it doesn't sting as much but you get sloppy conditions sometimes that make you change goggles many times during the race. I like the dirt surface. That's why I'm here in Kentucky."

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