First year Mt. Vernon coach Matt Mayhew was very clear. The 2015 Marauders are focused on being viewed as “One Unit,” as opposed to a collection of talented players.

“We talked about it after practice (Friday), and we don’t really want our names in the paper,” Mayhew said. “We want to compete as one group.”

The reason so many of the names may seem new to area soccer fans this year is that the Marauders graduated nine seniors from the team, the majority of which were starters.

Mayhew is expecting a large contingent from last year’s competitive junior varsity squad to make the transition to varsity a smooth one.

“We had a very solid JV team last year, and those guys got a ton of minutes there and some varsity experience as well,” Mayhew said.

Mayhew expects Jaret Whitehouse, Carson Jones, Joe Young, Josh Powell, and Timmy Clone to be the newcomers the team leans on the heaviest.

Whitehouse, a junior, has even been named a team captain. Mayhew said Whitehouse, along with co-captains Luke Yeadon and Seth Luke have excelled in their leadership role so far in summer practice.

“These guys have consistently got the team’s mood in the right place before each practice, and I expect they will do the same for the games,” Mayhew said.

Although the team relies on its captains for leadership, don’t expect those players to receive the lion’s share of chances.

“This summer, our guys have really focused on getting the ball to the player who is playing the best that day,” Mayhew said. “I’ve really been impressed by the unselfishness of this group.”

While the individuals may be unselfish, Mt. Vernon will be looking to capture sectional and conference championships as one.

Kickoff: Mt. Vernon shutout Richmond 5-0 in its home opener Monday.