For the second season in a row, Sherman’s boys soccer team is the fourth seed out of District 17-4A in the Class 4A Region II playoffs.

For the second season in a row, Sherman’s boys soccer team is the fourth seed out of District 17-4A in the Class 4A Region II playoffs.


In the bracket the Bearcats compete in, that means an extraordinarily-tough draw against a Frisco ISD powerhouse in the first round.


But at least they’re in the dance. Next spring, when the smaller 4A schools peel off to form their own soccer classification, the alignment in the new Class 5A is likely to revert back to 32 districts and line up closely with other sports, which would make districts larger and qualifying tougher.


"As long as I’ve coached, I don’t know what (the University Interscholastic League) will do," Bearcats head coach Chico Aleman said. "I hope for travel purposes, they’ll keep us going down 75. But who knows? We may end up going to Wichita Falls again.


"I just know for us to be competitive, we’ve got to keep working with the younger generation. We’re working on getting a middle school program started so we can be competitive with all the other programs."


The UIL is expected to announce the new soccer alignments for 2015 and 2016 in the next week or two.


For now, though, the Bearcats (5-12-2) will take advantage of the playoff draw they have. It won’t be easy, though, as they get to tackle 18-4A champion Frisco Liberty tonight at 7:15 p.m. at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, the home of FC Dallas.


Even though the 20,000-seat stadium won’t be full, Aleman said it’ll be a thrill for his players to play on the same pitch as the pros.


"We were thinking at first to play at a neutral site, but their coach said (Toyota)," Aleman said. "I thought at first he meant the practice field."


Aleman said the team will leave school early to get accustomed to the venue.


Liberty (20-1) and Sherman met earlier this season, on Jan. 31, and the Redhawks only won by a score of 2-0, with Keaton Parks and Stian Sandbekkhaug recording Liberty’s goals.


"They are good, and we did lose to them, but they hit the post four or five times and our kids played good against them," Aleman said. "We’ll have our hands full. But, I told our kids, for me, it would be a dream come true to play the best team and prove to myself I’m a good soccer player."


Sandbekkhaug, who has signed with Valparaiso, has a whopping 29 goals and 20 assists on the season, followed by Juan Amaro with a dozen goals and Parks with 11.


"I don’t think we’ve scored 11 goals all year as a team," Aleman said. "Our biggest problem is scoring. We don’t have a truly legitimate scorer. We’ve been inconsistent because we haven’t had the personnel that’s worked together for more than two years."


The return of senior Jason Chavez from a concussion will help the Bearcats in the scoring department tonight.


"That gives us a little boost," Aleman said. "If we can get the ball up front with Jason and Christian Casco, that gives us some opportunities."


The Bearcats defeated Anna twice and earned a point by taking district runner-up McKinney North to a shootout. They also turned in a solid result in a 2-1 loss against undefeated district champion Prosper.


"The kids are hard workers and they won’t hang their heads," Aleman said. "Defensively we’ll make mistakes, but nobody has blown us away."