One could forgive the members of the Pennridge girls soccer team if they were basking in the glory of winning the 2020 PIAA Class 3A title.
But one does not have to.
The Rams consider last year’s title a thing of the past, and have their eyes set firmly on the 2021 season.
“That was the best day of my life,” said Pennridge senior captain Sierra Shaeffer, the goaltender. “It was amazing. But that was last year. Nothing is guaranteed and this year is a clean slate. Anything can happen.
“It’s a lot to live up to, and that pressure can be good or bad, but if we stay together and work as a team, I think everything will fall into place for us.”
Pennridge began this year’s campaign with an 8-0 shutout of non-league opponent Palisades on Saturday, at their hosts’ Walter Rohrer Stadium.
Liv Grenda got things started for the Rams, scoring four minutes into play. After that, although the Rams dominated on offense, they were unable to find the net again until Hailey Primwhere took a pass from Sophie Craig with five minutes remaining in the first half to give Pennridge a 2-0 halftime lead.
The Rams’ offense went into a frenzy in the second half, with Grenda scoring, following by three consecutive goals by Craig, two with assists from Grenda and one assisted by Joey Tomlinson. Tomlinson scored with an assist from Craig, then Shaeffer capped the day with a goal, assisted by Ryan Hodder.
“It’s great to open up with a big win,” said Grenda, a sophomore. “We definitely have a target on our backs but that pushes us to want to work hard so we can hopefully win another state title.
“We’re in a tough conference (Suburban One League Colonial Division) but that is really good preparation for us. That really challenges us and helps us get better.”
She was a freshman on last year’s varsity.
“It was a good experience to be a freshman on last year’s team,” said Grenda, who is also a member of the Key Club at Pennridge. “It was really scary coming in but we grew together and that really helped us. We’re close off the field and that helped us connect on the field.”
She would like to play in college.
“That’s very important to me,” she said. “My older brothers both did sports in college.”
Brother Marco played soccer at Ursinus while T.J. ran track at Susquehanna.