By Jeremy McDonald
SILVERTON, Ore.– It was the first day of the new restrictions across the State Wednesday afternoon as the Foxes Girls soccer squad took to McGinnis Field for some drills.
For Silverton’s Emily Hyde, it wasn’t anything new. She’s been adjusting to whatever this pandemic has thrown her way since the Spring when Hyde was playing with one of the CFC squads in Salem.
“Oh, it’s awesome. I play club soccer with CFC over in Salem and we were able to play kind of throughout this whole thing. A lot of it is just the social aspect of it and just being able to see the girls again, there’s still a lot of restrictions but it just means a lot to start being able to…making that climb and with everyone for the State Championship,” Hyde said.
Hyde committed to Linfield University, formerly Linfield College, Tuesday for Women’s Soccer. A long-time coming for the defensive midfielder, knowing all the long-hours she’s put in since she came into the High School scene four years ago.
Walking in, Hyde thought she was going to be a Varsity player right after try-outs. She played with the boys in eighth-grade so there was a sense of confidence that it was a sure thing.
Then reality hit.
“I just went to the mandatory practices; I didn’t do anything else. I made JV as a freshman. After try-outs the JV coach came up ‘hey you’re going to be playing for my team’ and at that time I thought ‘oh my God’,” described Hyde. “I was super frustrated because I thought I could have that spot-on Varsity, my friends made Varsity.
“But afterwards I thought ‘I can’t control the fact I’m on JV, but I can control how hard I work. My mindset and working extra’. So that was a big force in me being the player that I am today.”
So, the Senior started dedicating herself. She had to commit herself. There’s talk about getting one-percent better. That meant gym work, extra field work, etc. for Hyde. Putting in that homework away from practice to ensure the controllable’s were in her favor for decision day if she was on JV or Varsity moving forward.
Hyde got a chance to Varsity her sophomore year. It drove the then-sophomore to tears when she found out she made the Varsity squad.
“I was crying,” laughed Hyde.
When Hyde joined the Varsity squad, Silverton were beginning their sixth run to the 5A State Playoffs (they’re at seven straight years of reaching the postseason entering 2021) and had a State Runner-Up in 2016 during that span. For Hyde, she had to embrace those high expectations that the Foxes coaching staff put on their Varsity players.
“I came in and the girls were like serious when you came to practice, this was what you were doing. It was an awesome experience for me to learn, to shape me into ‘this is what you have to do if you want to pursue soccer at a high-level,” Hyde said.
“(Maggie Roth) was that type of player, Maggie would just stay and do extra work. That was an awesome Role model for me to come in and see that. That was what a Senior Capitan with those kind of accolades was supposed to do. I knew I had to do that. My family all was ‘if you’re going to try to do something, you got to go all-in. You got to commit to it’. So, I knew if I wanted to commit to soccer, I had to stay after, before and do all that.”
Roth was a Senior Hyde’s freshman year.
During the Foxes reached the 5A State Quarterfinals that year before falling to Mid-Willamette Conference rival West Albany 3-2.
Silverton reached the first-round last year in her break-out season in the mid-field. Building from her sophomore season, Hyde used her IQ, grit and tenacity to lead the Foxes defense. All while setting up a counterattack to push the ball back the other direction.
For Hyde, the decision to go to Linfield was interesting. She had to get creative around the NCAA restrictions due to the Coronavirus, but remained in contact with the coaches and looked around the campus herself.
The program, in terms of athletics, is just one of three things that Hyde looked at in her decision.
“I can tell that the program is going to go places, (Linfield Head) Coach (Steve) Simmons wants the program to be a top level program in the Division-III level and in the Northwest,” starts Hyde. “It’s just so awesome to be able to know that I’m going to get to play somewhere. I met the girls, did a tour and everything. It’s a perfect fit.”
The other two included Financial aid and Academic, where she’s leaning more toward Exercise Science as she prepares for the next chapter of her career.
For now, as Wednesday afternoon slowly turned into evening, Hyde joined the 11 other girls who came out to the session with their mask on and went to work. Hoping that their season is right around the corner.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald