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The 2020 Sherman High girls soccer team is pictured.

SETH — Sherman High girls’ soccer coach Angela Lilly puts it simply with her assessment of the team’s 2020 roster: “This year is a lot of new faces and new players.”

She said this could be considered something of a “rebuild year” for the Lady Tide, as the program at Sherman is still young. Nevertheless, she is excited to have the team together and have fun.

The roster of twelve — including three seniors, five juniors, two sophomores, and two freshmen — still contains outspoken leaders for newer players to depend on. Junior Chasity Omeara returns in the center midfielder role to control play on the field. Junior Emily Ceravolo returns as a prolific striker, along with senior Braley Murphy. Newcomers include junior Katherine Clendenin, who plays softball as a multiple-sport athlete, and freshman Kailee Eskins, who has experience playing soccer and should be joining the team’s midfield.

Coach Lilly said she is excited about the team, and she hopes the mixture of players both new and experienced can continue to grow soccer’s presence at Sherman High.

“The returning players are already really encouraging [the newer players] and doing the best they can to help show them the ropes,” Lilly said. “I’m really impressed with the team already being there for each other.”

One challenge the team faces is numbers. Injuries may threaten the team of only 12 to play down from their expected XI. Keeping the team safe during the pandemic is another difficult task. Separating equipment, sanitizing, inquiring about symptoms, taking temperatures, and generally keeping players from being clumped together have helped to facilitate this. Masks will be acquired for traveling.

“We just want to have fun this year and make the best of it,” Lilly said.

Having a squad that improves and contributes, and especially keeping players on the roster next year, is a goal Lilly would like to reach. Even with all the difficulties COVID-19 has created, she remains determined to give the girls a safe and exciting season.

“We’re going to stay Sherman Tide strong and refuse to sink,” she said.

The Lady Tide opens its season at home, playing James Monroe at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 5.

Reporter Phil Perry can be reached at pperry@ or at 304-307-2401.