KIDWELL - Beginning your first year at a new job can be tough, however, starting your first ever head coaching job at a school with seven players that have at least three years of experience can make things a little easier.
That is, unless you are new Tyler Consolidated softball coach Sam Livingston, who does have that experience, but also a roster that includes even more first-year players with eight and another in just her second season.
Livingston takes the Silver Knights reins from long-time coach Charlene Galluzzo, after a five-year stint as assistant at St. Marys High School. He was a part of the Blue Devils' run toward a state championship last season that was eventually ended by Moorefield, 8-6, in the state semifinals.
Leading the way for Tyler Consolidated this season will be a pair of four-year senior infielders in shortstop Taylor Clem and first baseman Martina Parrish. They will be joined by one of the newest members of the squad, classmate and catcher/third baseman Electra Livingston, the coach's daughter who also arrived from the St. Marys program.
There is a ton of experience among the five juniors on the roster, all of whom have been around since they were freshmen. Bailey Smith is an outfielder who will be used mostly in right and center field while Devinn Moore and Jasmine Moore will both see time in the circle. Both can also play first base.
Shandi Long is a junior who will play left or center while Alex Bubenchik can catch and play second base.
Lilli Orr is the only underclassman with any experience, having played as a freshman, and can play second base or the outfield while fellow sophomores are pitcher/first baseman Celeste Beard and outfielder Alexis Smith. The freshman class could be counted on heavily at some point, and definitely in the future.
Pitcher/third baseman Kali Shanabarger is joined by Tiffany Smith center field/third base, Cosette Bantug in the outfield, Kelsey Black behind the plate and Sammie Frum in the outfield.
''This is my first year at Tyler Consolidated after being the assistant at St. Marys for five seasons,'' Sam Livingston mentioned. ''We have a good mix of returning athletes and first-year players that we are hoping can come together. The girls have been working very hard to get ready and I am very optimistic about the upcoming season.''
One good thing for Livingston is that his Silver Knights will not have to do a lot of traveling early on with three consecutive home games, including a doubleheader with Valley, a trip to New Martinsville to take on Magnolia and another home contest with Ritchie County in the first week of the season.