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PHOTO BY DOUG DURAN/BAY AREA NEWS GROUP

West Region Player of the Week Ashley Ward had five goals, five assists and eight draw controls for California High (Calif.) in a 15-12 win over San Ramon Valley (Calif.).

Nike/US Lacrosse High School Girls' National Top 25, Regional Top 10s


Mill Creek (Ga.) moves into the South Top 10 on the heels of its 100th victory, while California High (Calif.) advances in the West on the heels of a season-opening win over San Ramon Valley (Calif.). Plus, we unveil preseason write-ups for the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest.

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Check back to USLaxMagazine.com each Tuesday for the latest national and regional rankings and top performers.


National Top 25

 
March 7, 2017

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1 McDonogh (Md.) 0-0 1 3/15 vs. Vero Beach (Fla.)
2 Garden City (N.Y.) 0-0 2 3/20 vs. Port Washington (N.Y.)
3 St. Stephen's & St. Agnes (Va.) 0-0 3 3/15 vs. Holy Cross (Md.)
4 Good Counsel (Md.) 0-0 4 3/14 vs. St. Mary's (Md.)
5 Bishop Ireton (Va.) 0-0 5 3/13 vs. Bryn Mawr (Md.)
6 Darien (Conn.) 0-0 6 4/1 vs. Yorktown (N.Y.)
7 Manhasset (N.Y.) 0-0 7 3/20 vs. Massapequa (N.Y.)
8 St. Anthony's (N.Y.) 0-0 8 3/25 vs. Cold Spring Harbor (N.Y.)
9 Summit (N.J.) 0-0 9 3/29 vs. Mountain Lakes (N.J.)
10 Mount Sinai (N.Y.) 0-0 10 3/28 vs. Shoreham-Wading River (N.Y.)
11 Christian Brothers (N.Y.) 0-0 11 4/7 vs. Homer (N.Y.)
12 Ridgewood (N.J.) 0-0 12 3/11 vs. Rumson-Fair Haven (N.J.)
13 West Islip (N.Y.) 0-0 13 3/29 vs. Sachem North (N.Y.)
14 Wantagh (N.Y.) 0-0 14 3/20 vs. Farmingdale (N.Y.)
15 Notre Dame Prep (Md.) 0-0 15 3/19 vs. Bishop Ireton (Va.)
16 Episcopal Academy (Pa.) 0-0 16 3/24 vs. Holton-Arms (Md.)
17 Agnes Irwin (Pa.) 0-0 17 3/16 vs. Germantown Academy (Pa.)
18 Pittsford (N.Y.) 0-0 18 4/3 vs. Fairport (N.Y.)
19 Marriotts Ridge (Md.) 0-0 19 3/21 vs. Centennial (Md.)
20 Westwood (Mass.) 0-0 20 4/1 vs. Duxbury (Mass.)
21 Georgetown Visitation (D.C.) 0-0 21 3/15 vs. Bishop Ireton (Va.)
22 Milton (Ga.) 4-0 23 3/10 vs. South Forsyth (Ga.)
23 Loyola (Ill.) 0-0 24 3/16 vs. Fenwick (Ill.)
24 Novato (Calif.) 0-0 25 3/14 vs. Piedmont (Calif.)
25 Moorestown (N.J.) 0-0 NR 3/25 vs. Northern Highlands (N.J.)







Nike/US Lacrosse High School Rankings
National Boys' Top 25 | National Girls' Top 25
Northeast Boys' Top 10 | Northeast Girls' Top 10
Mid-Atlantic Boys' Top 10 | Mid-Atlantic Girls' Top 10
South Boys' Top 10
| South Girls' Top 10
Midwest Boys' Top 10
| Midwest Girls' Top 10
West Boys' Top 10
| West Girls' Top 10

Northeast Top 10 (Preseason)

1. Garden City (N.Y.)
The Trojans closed the season with 18 straight wins and claimed the Class B state title with a 16-5 win over Yorktown (N.Y.).  Devon Heaney (Southern California) and Celia Concannon (Harvard) highlight the strong cast of returning players for Garden City, which opens the 2017 season March 20 at Port Washington (N.Y.).

2. Darien (Conn.)
Darien is coming off its fourth consecutive state title and looks to build on a 14-game win streak to close last season. The Blue Wave, which have won 15 state titles under coach Lisa Lindley, are led by senior midfielder Laura Murphy (Penn). Darien has an early-season matchup looming with New Jersey powerhouse Ridgewood.

3. Manhasset (N.Y.)
Showing the depth and power of New York’s Section VIII Class B, Manhasset closed the season with 10-9 win over Wantagh (N.Y.) in the sectional semifinals and a 9-8 loss to Garden City (N.Y.) in the finals. Each of Manhasset’s four losses last season were by one-goal margins. Junior attacker Madison Rielly (Maryland) is one of the top returning players for coach Danielle Gallagher and her team, which open the season March 20 at Massapequa (N.Y.).

4. St. Anthony’s (N.Y.)
The Friars ended the season with a 15-4 win over Sacred Heart (N.Y.) in the CHSAA title game. Goalie Delaney Galvin (Marist) leads a strong returning nucleus for St. Anthony’s as it prepares to open the season March 25 against Cold Spring Harbor (N.Y.).

5. Mount Sinai (N.Y.)
The Mustangs capped the 2016 season with a 12-3 win over Skaneateles (N.Y.) in the Class C state championship game. Goalie Hannah Van Middelem (Syracuse) backstops a strong group of returning players for Mount Sinai, which opens the season March 28 against Shoreham-Wading River (N.Y.).

6. Christian Brothers Academy (N.Y.)
In the last five seasons, CBA has won state titles in each of the three state classifications, including a Class A state title in 2016 after an 11-6 win over Pittsford (N.Y.). Sam McKenna (UConn) and Olivia Penoyer (Virginia) lead the group of returning players. West Genesee (N.Y.) should challenge CBA in Section III Class A.

7. West Islip (N.Y.)
The Lions fell 11-5 to Pittsford (N.Y.) in the Class A state semifinals to end their 2016 campaign and have a lot of offensive power to replace with the graduation of Vanessa Costantino (Syracuse) and Emily Piciullo (Jacksonville), who combined for 95 goals. However, a solid core returns, including attacker Emily Beier (Loyola). West Islip opens the season March 29 against Sachem North (N.Y.).

8. Wantagh (N.Y.)
Coming off a one-goal overtime loss to Manhasset in the sectional semifinals last year, the Warriors remain right in the middle of the Nassau County Class B muck with Manhasset and Garden City. Midfielders Megan Gordon (Northwestern) and Alexandra Murphy (UMass) form a strong returning nucleus for Wantagh, which opens the season March 20 at Farmingdale (N.Y.).

9. Pittsford (N.Y.)
The Panthers capped one of the best seasons in program history with an 11-6 loss to Christian Brothers Academy (N.Y.) in the Class A state title game. Elizabeth Blanding (New Hampshire), Heather Higgins (Old Dominion) and Jillie Quevedo (Virginia) lead a strong senior class for the Panthers, who will have stiff competition in Section V (Rochester area) Class A from Victor (N.Y.).

10. Westwood (Mass.)
Coach Leslie Frank’s Wolverines avenged a 2015 state championship loss with a 12-6 win over Longmeadow (Mass.) in the state semifinals last year and claimed the title with a 13-7 win over North Andover (Mass.). Westwood closed the season with 15 straight wins but will again be challenged in Massachusetts South Division 1 by Notre Dame-Hingham (Mass.), coached by Frank’s daughter, Meredith Frank.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Jenn Medjid, Garden City (N.Y.), Jr., A (Boston College)
Laura Murphy, Darien (Conn.), Sr., M (Penn)
Olivia Penoyer, Christian Brothers Academy (N.Y.), Jr., A (Virginia)
Madison Rielly, Manhasset (N.Y.), Jr., A (Maryland)
Kyla Sears, Skaneateles (N.Y.), Sr., M (Princeton)

— Will Cleveland

Mid-Atlantic Top 10 (Preseason)

1. McDonogh (Md.)
Everybody continues to chase the defending national champion Eagles, who open the spring having won 155 straight games and eight straight IAAM titles. This reloaded version features seven returning starters, including Andie Aldave (Notre Dame) and Catie May (Maryland).
 
2. St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes (Va.)

The Saints bounced back from an early slip-up against Good Counsel (Md.) last spring and cruised to ISL and Virginia independent school titles. They might be even better now with Zoe Belodeau (Penn) and Grayson Offutt (Virginia) back to pace an explosive offense.
 
3. Good Counsel (Md.)

The Falcons piled up as many quality wins as anybody last spring but fell short of a WCAC crown. Halle Graham (Virginia) and Taylor McDaniels (UNC) will be counted on to lead the charge on both ends this time.
 
4. Bishop Ireton (Va.)

The Cardinals avenged a regular season loss to Good Counsel to claim the WCAC crown last season. They’ll have to replace All-American Kelly Larkin but most everyone else is back, including midfielder Kayla Duperrouzel (Yale) and goalie Amelia Cole (Denver).
 
5. Summit (N.J.)

The veteran Hilltoppers powered to a Tournament of Champions title last spring. Though they’ll be much more youthful after graduating 10 senior starters, Helen Louise Johnson (Stanford) and Julia Szynal (Northwestern) should be able to pick up the offensive slack.
 
6. Ridgewood (N.J.)

Last year, the Maroons fell just short of their first Tournament of Champions crown since 2011. They’re among the favorites again thanks to a decorated senior class featuring Hannah Cermack (Boston College), Chelsea Trattner (Stanford) and Alex Absey (Columbia).
 
7. Notre Dame Prep (Md.)

The Blazers took their lumps early last season but were playing as well as anybody in the region by May. They should be ready for the next step with Grace Haus (Florida), Katie Railey (Virginia) and Keegan Barger (Johns Hopkins) anchoring the senior class.
 
8. Episcopal Academy (Pa.)

The Churchmen capped a banner 2016 season with a Pennsylvania independent schools title. Though they’ve only got five starters back for the repeat bid, the list includes the team leaders in goals (Taylor Lucey), assists (Katie Crager) and caused turnovers (Izzy Rohr).
 
9. Agnes Irwin (Pa.)

Injuries tripped up the Owls a bit last season, but they still managed to grab a third straight Inter-Ac title. Expectations remain high with an ambitious schedule and 22 D-I recruits on the roster, headlined by Lila Barker (Virginia) and Maria Pansini (Princeton).
 
10. Marriotts Ridge (Md.)

The Mustangs usually have as much talent as any public school around. That’s the case again with a strong senior class led by Johns Hopkins recruit Caitlin Ohnmacht and a slew of promising youngsters like Maryland-bound sophomore Victoria Hensh.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Andie Aldave, McDonogh (Md.), Sr., M (Notre Dame)
Lila Barker, Agnes Irwin (Pa.), Sr., M (Virginia)
Zoe Belodeau, St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes (Va.), Sr., A (Penn)
Shelby Harrison, St. Mary’s (Md.), Sr., M (Johns Hopkins)
Chloe Jones, Lawrenceville (N.J.), Sr., M (Virginia)

— Eric Detweiler




PHOTO BY PAUL THOMAS/GWINNETT DAILY POST

Mill Creek (Ga.) junior midfielder Amya Hudson scored the game-tying goal and overtime winner in an 18-17 win over then-South No. 1 Walton (Ga.).


South Top 10

1. Milton (Ga.), 4-0
The Eagles have allowed just four goals in four games, including an 18-1 win over North Forsyth on Feb. 27, and move into the No. 1 slot they’ve been accustomed to holding in years past. Milton faces South Forsyth (Ga.) on Thursday before games with nationally ranked McDonogh (Md.) and St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes (Va.), as well as 6-1 St. Thomas Aquinas (Fla.) over the next two weeks. Previous: 2

2. Vero Beach (Fla.), 8-0
The Fighting Indians picked up wins against Jensen Beach (Fla.) and Benjamin School (Fla.) last week behind Gabby Sposato’s seven goals. They play Martin County (Fla.) on Tuesday and then are off until March 15 when they host national No. 1 McDonogh (Md.). Previous: 3

3. St. John’s (Texas), 3-0
The Mavericks remained unbeaten after picking up a 20-10 win over Katy (Texas) early last week. They have two games against in-state opponents mid-week and then play Park City (Utah) on Sunday and Santa Margarita (Calif.) on Monday. Park City was the Utah Division I state champ in 2016. Previous: 4

4. Hutchison (Tenn.), 3-0
The Sting beat Lausanne Collegiate (Tenn.) 20-0 and followed that with a 21-1 win against White Station (Tenn.) early last week. They have allowed just three goals in their three games. Hutchison heads to California this week for games against Mater Dei, St. Margaret’s and Foothill. Mater Dei, ranked No. 3 in the West, was the California Southern Section champ in 2016. Previous: 5

5. North Gwinnett (Ga.), 6-0
The Bulldogs make their South Top 10 debut after picking up two more wins last week to stay unbeaten. They routed Chattahoochee (Ga.) 16-0 and John’s Creek (Ga.) 16-6. North Gwinnett is averaging 19 goals per game while allowing just six. Previous: NR

6. American Heritage-Delray (Fla.), 8-0
The Stallions picked up two more wins last week to move into the poll, most notably earning a 14-6 decision over Pine Crest (Fla.). They needed overtime to beat last year in the second round of regional play, but cruised this time with help from from Caitlyn Wurzburger, who led the team with 11 goals and nine assists combined over the two wins last week. Allegra Catalano had four goals and two assists. Previous: NR

7. Cardinal Gibbons (N.C.), 1-0
The Crusaders opened the season with a 16-3 win over Durham Academy (N.C.).  They play three times this week, including a matchup with out-to-state opponent St. Catherine’s (Va.) in the King of the Spring Classic. Previous: 8

8. Lake Highland Prep (Fla.), 7-2
The Highlanders have won six straight since a 1-2 start that included losses to Vero Beach and Milton. Three of those wins came last week, including a 17-11 decision over Pine Crest (Fla.). Previous: 10

9. Mill Creek (Ga.), 5-1
The Hawks make their debut in the rankings after slipping past previous No. 1 Walton 18-17 in an overtime thriller last week behind Amya Hudson’s six goals. Their lone loss was to Lake Highland Prep, 13-12, on Feb. 24. Mill Creek was 20-1 last spring and advanced to the Georgia 6A state semifinals before being eliminated. The win over Walton was No. 100 for the program. Previous: NR

10. Walton (Ga.), 4-1
The Raiders drop all the way from the No. 1 spot after losing 18-17 to previously unranked Mill Creek in overtime. The loss ended a 12-game win streak for the 2016 Georgia 6A state champions, dating back to April 14, 2016. Previous: 1

PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Amya Hudson, Mill Creek (Ga.)
The junior midfielder came up huge for the Hawks in an 18-17 overtime win over Walton (Ga.), then the top-ranked team in the South. Hudson scored with 12 second left in regulation to tie the game and then netted the game-winner. She had six goals and an assist in helping her team rally from a six-goal deficit in the second half.
 
 
Also notable:
Shannon Costello, North Gwinnett (Ga.); Allie Dreyer, Kennesaw Mountain (Ga.); Naomi Sanders, Fort Lauderdale (Fla.); Gabby Sposato, Vero Beach (Fla.); Ainsley Thurston, Lake Highland Prep (Fla.); Katie Trainer, St. John Paul II (Fla.)

— Aimee Ford Foster

Midwest Top 10 (Preseason)

1. Loyola Academy (Ill.)
Northwestern signee Brennan Dwyer is back for her senior year after another stellar season in which she amassed 96 goals, 80 assists and 236 draw controls to lead the Ramblers to their eighth consecutive state title. There’s no reason to believe that run will end this year, as Dwyer is one of eight seniors headed to Division I college programs next year.
 
2. Upper Arlington (Ohio)

The Golden Bears look to continue a 40-game win streak that began in early 2015 as they begin their quest for a third consecutive state title. They are led by players like senior midfielders Samantha Brown (Mercer) and Olivia Schildmeyer, the team’s lone All-American last year.
 
3. Rockford (Mich.)

The Rams have some young talent back to lead their bid for a fifth consecutive state title, including junior midfielders Brooklyn Neumen (North Carolina) and Mekenzie Vander Molen (Ohio State). Rockford plays Upper Arlington in a much-anticipated matchup March 25.
 
4. Eden Prairie (Minn.)

The Eagles are poised for a run at a third straight state title, coming off a season in which their lone loss was to Loyola. They are led by senior midfielder/defender Hannah Brink (Ohio State) and attacker/midfielder Sammie Morton (Denver).
 
5. New Albany (Ohio)

The Eagles’ impressive 2016 season ended in the state semifinals by one goal, but they look to remain in the hunt behind a young, but experienced squad. New Albany graduated just six players and now are led by senior attacker Addison Hamilton (Navy).
 
6. Noblesville (Ind.)

The Millers have never won a state title but could surprise after coming off a motivating finish last year when their perfect season came to an end in the state semifinals. They return their two All-Americans in senior midfielders Taylor Gysin (Cincinnati) and Hannah Potter (Central Michigan), among others.
 
7. New Trier (Ill.)

The Trevians once again finished second to Loyola last year, a common occurrence since their last title in 2008. They have a solid foundation coming back from 2016 to try to end that title drought, including senior midfielders/attackers Katherine Gjertsen (Stanford) and Isabelle Sennett (Amherst) and senior midfielder Kyra Lamotte (Furman).
 
8. Blake (Minn.)

The Bears seek to get back on the board as state champions after falling short the past two years. Blake, which lost twice to Eden Prairie in 2016, is led by senior attacker Emily Johnsnid (Army) and defender Nellie Ide.
 
9. East Grand Rapids (Mich.)

The Pioneers won the Division II state championship last year for their fifth-straight title and bring back several players from that team, which was junior-heavy. Among the top returning players is senior midfielder Auden Barger-Elliott (Brown), who was the team’s lone All-American last year.
 
10. Hinsdale Central (Ill.)

The Red Devils placed third in the state tournament last year after a runner-up finish in 2015, and they should once again be in the mix this season. Senior attacker Anna Santulli (Stanford) has big-game experience that will be important through another challenging schedule.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Brennan Dwyer, Loyola (Ill.), midfielder, Northwestern
Sammie Morton, Eden Prairie (Minn.), midfielder, Denver
Hannah Potter, Noblesville (Ind.), midfielder, Central Michigan
Brooklyn Neumen, Rockford (Mich.), midfielder, North Carolina
Samantha Brown, Upper Arlington (Ohio), midfielder, Mercer

— Bryant Billing

West Top 10

1. Novato (Calif.), 0-0
The Hornets open March 14 against Piedmont (Calif.), as they try to build off two straight North Coast Section Division I championship seasons. Previous: 1

2. Colorado Academy (Colo.), 0-0
The Mustangs travel to Regis Jesuit on March 11 to begin their season as the two-time defending state champions. Previous: 2

3. Mater Dei (Calif.), 2-0
The Monarchs outscored their first two opponents 39-11, including a 16-1 win over Newport Harbor (Calif.) on March 2. Grace Houser (Cal Berkley) totaled 12 goals and two assists and Mackenzie Wallevand (Fresno State) had four goals and 10 assists to lead Mater Dei in the two wins. Previous: 3

4. St. Ignatius (Calif.) 0-0
The Wildcats were scheduled to open last week at Sacred Heart Prep (Calif.) but instead will wait until March 8 when they play at Carondelet (Calif.). They will be looking to build off last year’s WCAL championship behind a stacked roster. Previous: 4

5. Torrey Pines (Calif.), 1-0
The Falcons already are building off their first San Diego CIF Open Division title since 2011, as they opened with a 16-1 victory over Mission Bay (Calif.) on Monday. Previous: 5

6. Lake Oswego (Ore.), 0-0
The Lakers are gearing up for their fifth championship season in seven years. They begin play March 14 against Oregon Episcopal. Previous: 6

7. California High (Calif.), 1-0
The Grizzlies opened with a 15-12 win over San Ramon Valley (Calif.) on March 3. Senior Ashley Ward and junior Isabella McHugh each tallied five goals and five assists in the win, and Ward added a team-best eight draw controls. Previous: 8

8. Cherry Creek (Colo.), 0-0
The Bruins get their season going March 9 against ThunderRidge (Colo.). They’ve finished as the state runners up for three straight years. Previous: 7

9. Eastside Catholic (Wash.), 0-0
The Crusaders begin their quest to defend their first state title since 2010 when they open the season March 13 against Eastlake (Wash.). Previous: 9

10. La Costa Canyon (Calif.), 0-0
The Mavericks were slated to play La Jolla to open the season Monday, as they seek to get back on track after their string of four straight section titles came to an end last year in the San Diego CIF Open Division final. Previous: 10

PLAYER OF THE WEEK

Ashley Ward, California High (Calif.)

The senior midfielder netted five goals and assisted on five others as the Grizzlies outpaced San Ramon Valley (Calif.), 15-12, in their opener on March 3. Ward, a Cal Berkley signee, also had a team-high eight draw controls.

Also notable: Isabella McHugh, California High (Calif.); Grace Houser, Mater Dei (Calif.)

— Laurel Pfahler