McNary midfielder Madeline Smith clears the ball in a game earlier this season. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

McNary midfielder Madeline Smith clears the ball in a game earlier this season. (KEIZERTIMES/Eric A. Howald)

Of the Keizertimes

The McNary High School varsity soccer teams’ seasons may have ended with play-in games, but the groundwork has been laid for future success.

On the girls team, McNary will lose seven players to graduation, but a young cadre will return with varsity experience. Graduating players are: Stefania Barragan, Savannah Compton, Alyssa Cornelius, Gabriella Garcia, Ellen Gonzalez, Madeline Smith and Alex Van Amburgh.

“The group that will return is going to be strong. If we can stay healthy during the off-season, we should be in the top three (of the Central Valley Conference) next year,” said Miguel Camarena, head coach of both boys and girls varsity teams.

In all, the team will return eight players. Four were starters this season. Among the returners will be sophomore Janie Jarmin, who put away nine goals for the Celtics this season on top of eight goals as a freshman. With two years to go, Jarmin is almost to the halfway point of achieving her goal: a school record in goals scored. To claim that title, she’ll have to beat former Celt Lauren Brouse’s 41 goals.

In addition to Jarmin, Camarena said he’ll be looking to Katherine Patterson, Michaela Sanchez, Kelli Miller and Brianna Koch to fill in leadership roles being vacated by the program’s graduates.

While struggles in the season included a tie with McKay High School, fans got a glimpse of the team’s future late in the season. In their final game of CVC competition, the Lady Celts tied West Salem High School 1-1. At the time, the Titans were the fifth-ranked team in the state.

To fulfill the promise shown in that game, Camarena said the team still needs to improve its tactical approach, speed and strength.

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