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New record just a matter of time


Junior striker Taylor Herman has had her gaze locked on Hays High School's single-season scoring record since the beginning of the season, and judging by her pace, it won't be long until she has it.

It could be as soon as today. The Indians play at 4 p.m. at Garden City -- a team she scored twice against on April 16 in Hays.

Herman leads the Indian girls' soccer team with 12 goals this season, and she needs just two goals to tie Jessie Steffen's regular season scoring record set in 2009.

"I've been thinking about it all year," Herman said. "It's definitely been a goal of mine since the beginning."

Steffen set the record during her junior season when Herman was an eighth grader, and Herman, now also a junior, has the opportunity to break it with four regular season games remaining plus the post-season.

"Taylor just has a nose for the ball," said Hays High coach Chris Michaelis. "She does a really good job of getting in position and being able to finish."

Hays High senior forward Shannon Shubert said the team is aware of Herman's proximity to the record and said the team wants to help her get it.

"Taylor is an amazing soccer player," Shubert said.

Herman's statistical success seems to have come from nowhere after scoring just one goal as a freshman and four goals as a sophomore.

Part of it has to be because of her maturation as a player.

"She's started every game since she was a freshman," Michaelis said. "Her knowledge of the game has really picked up, and I think that has been her biggest asset."

However, Herman credited her team's development, as last season's team was mostly powered by underclassmen.

"There were more freshmen last year, but I practiced with them a lot more this year so I feel more comfortable around them now," Herman said.

She said she wouldn't be where she is now if it weren't for her team.

"It's not just all me. It's definitely my team," she said.

She might be even closer to the record if she wasn't so charitable with the ball.

After getting an assist against Thomas More Prep-Marian on Thursday at FHSU Stadium, Herman now is tied with junior April Johnson for the team lead in assists with three.

Michaelis said Herman's success boils down to her competitive nature, which has helped Hays High go 9-3 and 5-1 in Western Athletics Conference play so far this season.

"What she brings to our team and brings out of the other girls is her competitiveness," Michaelis said.

"In practice, she hates to lose, even in a one-on-one battle."

Herman has been on a tear recently, scoring seven goals in the past four games. If she continues scoring at even half of that pace, the record will be hers before the playoffs.