Hastings, NE -- After much thought and deliberation, our Local 4 sports team came up with the Top 10 moments of 2018. The list goes as follows:
No. 10: Tom Osbrone's First Pitch
Legendary Nebraska football coach - and Hastings native - Tom Osborne threw out the ceremonial first pitch this summer on Opening Day for the Hastings Sodbusters. The game went into extra innings with Jake Oblas hitting a walk-off single to win the game for the 'Busters.
No. 9: Gamez nets game-winner for GISH
In the A-6 district boys soccer final, things got heated between Lincoln East and Grand Island. Late in the match, tempers flared resulting in three red cards - one for the Spartans and two for the Islanders. In the 73rd minute, Junior Gamez connected on a sensational goal clinched the district title and sent the Islanders to the state championship
No. 8: UNK volleyball's MIAA three-peat
The UNK volleyball team secured its third consecutive MIAA championship this fall in dramatic fashion. The Lopers defeated Washburn in a five-set thriller, improving to 8-0 on the season in five set matches. UNK had lost the previous two regular season meetings versus the Ichabods. The Lopers finished the season 33-3.
No. 7: Doeschot's golden-goal
The Hastings College women's soccer team won its second-straight GPAC championship thanks to a late goal from forward Courtney Doeschot. In double-overtime, Concordia's keeper missed on a free ball and Doeschot was there to punch it in and secure the conference title. The Broncos completed the perfect regular season and advanced to the second round of the NAIA Championship.
No. 6: McCoy's walk-off dinger
Hastings High shortstop Ellie McCoy set the Class B homerun record this fall - smashing 24 long-balls. One of those was in the district semifinal against Northwest. Trailing by two runs in the bottom of the 7th inning, McCoy launched a three-run bomb to straight-away center field to end the game. The Tigers later went on to win the district title and advance to its fourth straight state championship.
No. 5: Husker volleyball defies the odds
Coming off a national championship and the loss of several All-Americans, everyone wrote off the Husker volleyball team this season. But in typical John Cook fashion, Nebraska shocked everyone, advancing all the way to the NCAA title game where the Big Red fell to Stanford in five sets
No. 4: Scott Frost's first win
It took a while, but it was worth it. On October 20, Scott Frost notched his first win as the head coach at Nebraska with a 53-28 victory over Minnesota. The Huskers would go on to win four of their final six games to close out the season
No. 3: Blue Hill rallies - twice
The Blue Hill volleyball team needed two come-from-behind wins in order to secure the C2 state championship. Trailing 14-11 to Stanton in set five of the semifinal, the Bobcats rattled off five straight points to win. The following day, Blue Hill overcame a nine-point deficit against Cedar Catholic to secure the schools first ever volleyball championship. Rylee Kohmetscher recorded the final kill in both matches.
No. 2: York basketball's nine-point comeback
In the Class B boys basketball championship, York trailed Omaha Skutt by nine with less than 90 seconds to play. Brady Danielson went off during that final stretch, scoring 12 points to tie the game. The Dukes later went on to win in double-overtime, securing the schools second ever state championship.
No. 1: Kearney's soccer championship
This spring, Kearney High became the first school - boys or girls - outside the Lincoln/Omaha Metro area to win a soccer championship. The Bearcats defeated the one, four and two seeds en route to the championship.