If preseason friendly games mean anything, then everyone on the Lady Tigers’ schedule should take note after the McClain varsity girls posted five victories in six contests this summer.
“We’ve already had some success in the preseason after losing just one time in six games that we played this summer,” said second year Coach Shawn Peterman “That’s very encouraging.”
McClain has only one senior in Desriel Brewer, but has a wealth of returning juniors led by all-league standout Taylor Polley, who is considered one of the top offensive players in the South Central Ohio League.
“Taylor could break the school scoring record this year and I think she will,” Peterman said. “She already has over 50 goals in just two seasons of play, so if not this year she definitely should break it next season.”
Molly Rowe, another talented junior, also returns and will be the defensive anchor on the team. A strong junior class and some talented returning sophomores should provide plenty of solid leadership to this year’s squad.
“We have a really strong junior class and a few returning sophomores, so experience is definitely going to be a strong point for us this season,” continued Peterman. “We also had several girls play club soccer, including most of our incoming freshman who have all been playing together since they were 8 or 9 years old.”
Peterman’s main concern is his team’s lack of depth.
“We don’t have a very deep bench and with only 15 girls who are all solid players, we definitely don’t have any room for injuries,” the coach said.
The coach also feels his team needs to gel quickly as one unit and play better defensively if they are going to be successful this season.
“These girls are really coming together as a group and we’ve always said soccer is not an individual sport because there are 11 girls on that field who need to work together,” Peterman said. “We had a lot of balls that got through us last year so we will need to play much better defensively, too.”
Coach Petterman thinks that to be successful his team will need to improve on both the technical and tactical aspects of the game and also improve their field communication.
“My main goal is to see this team come together and really play well as one unit,” he said.
Chillicothe and Clinton Massie are the preseason picks to win the league in girl’s soccer this year.