Nike/LM West Boys' Preseason Top 10
The Nike/Lacrosse Magazine National High School Top 25, Regional Top 10 and Players to Watch were released in the March edition. The first in-season West report will drop March 15.
West Boys' Top 10
1. St. Ignatius (Calif.), 18-1
St. Ignatius is coming off one of its most memorable seasons after upsetting Landon (Md.) on an East Coast swing, winning the West Catholic Athletic League championship and finishing fifth in the national poll. The Wildcats lost four All-Americans but should be especially strong on defense with senior Stephen MacLeod (Georgetown) and junior Hall Peters (Virginia) serving as anchors.
2. Cherry Creek (Colo.), 18-1
The Bruins won their first state title since 2010 last season, but it was their 12th overall, and now they look to add to their collection with an experienced group coming back. Cherry Creek had several juniors and sophomores on its roster last year and remains in good shape, especially with attackman Henry Adams (Michigan) leading the way.
3. St. Margaret's Episcopal (Calif.), 21-3
The Tartans they claimed their second Southern Section title in three years and still have many key pieces from that championship roster. Among those returning are seniors Sam Harnisch (Denver) and Kevin Cox, who combined to score 105 goals last season.
4. Foothill-Santa Ana (Calif.), 20-2
The Knights suffered just one in-state loss last year, a few rounds too early in the playoffs, but return eight starters as they seek to claim their seventh CIF Southern Section title. They are led by senior attackman/middie Kevin Kodzis (Holy Cross), long-stick middie Jared Copeland and goalie Ryan Blank (St. John's).
5. Corner Canyon (Utah), 21-1
Corner Canyon lost 12 seniors, including two All-Americans, from its first state championship team, but the Chargers have players such as all-state players Davis Zwicky, Tobin Greenwald and Maxwell Asay returning in the midfield and attack, respectively.
6. San Ramon Valley (Calif.), 18-2
The Wolves won 11 straight games to close the season as the North Coast Section Division I champions. They graduated 12 seniors, but among the top returners is junior defender Joey Carrington, a North Carolina commit who was one of the team's three All-Americans.
7. Regis Jesuit (Colo.), 16-3
The state runner-up Raiders lost 13 contributing seniors, including four All-Americans, to graduation but still have 10 all-conference players returning, including junior faceoff specialist Zach Bodeau and sophomore long-stick middie Joey Soran.
8. Park City (Utah), 21-2
The Miners fell short in their attempts to defend their UHSLL Class A state championship and now have to replace 12 seniors, many of them starters. They return All-American faceoff specialist/midfielder Jackson Burton and sophomore attackman Beau Pederson (Princeton) as they replace missing parts.
9. Mercer Island (Wash.), 22-1
Having appeared in 12 state finals over the past 15 years, the defending champion Islanders are accustomed to a certain level of success. They'll seek their seventh state title this season with a good mix of experienced players returning.
10. Palos Verdes (Calif.), 17-6
The Sea Kings lost just seven seniors who played in all 23 games last year during the team's Southern Section runner-up finish. They had a strong junior class that is led by defender Shane Sharp and midfielder Jarrett Jones, both All-Americans, as well as attackman Aidan Westley, who had 55 goals and 21 assists last year.
FIVE PLAYERS TO WATCH
Colin Munro, Mountain Vista (Colo.), Jr., attack (UNC)
Hall Peters, St. Ignatius Prep (Calif.), Jr., defense (Virginia)
Beau Botkiss, Torrey Pines (Calif.), Sr., LSM/D (Harvard)
Kevin Kodzis, Foothill-Santa Ana (Calif.), Sr., A (Holy Cross)
Zion DeChesere, Coronado (Nev.), Jr., goalie (Michigan)
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