The Inquirer TOP 10
Last season's records in parentheses.
1. Haverford School (17-5). A paragon of excellence in the Inter-Ac League and Independent Schools playoffs, the Fords return a lot of talent, including juniors Conor Bradley and Connor Gregory. A tough nonleague schedule should only help.
2. Archbishop Wood (9-8-2). Don't let records deceive you: All the Vikings' losses last season were by a single goal. Expect them to compete for a Catholic League title this year.
3. Holy Ghost Prep (20-4). The defending District 1 Class AA and PIAA state champions lost a lot of leadership to graduation, but come playoff time, the Firebirds once again should be contenders.
4. Central Bucks East (14-4). It doesn't seem to matter whom the defending Suburban One Continental champs graduate - they always seem to be in the thick of things. Senior defender Booker Farrior and junior forward Evan Vare are ones to watch.
5. Great Valley (23-1). A perennial powerhouse in the Ches-Mont League, the Patriots put together a remarkable run last year. The defending District 1 Class AAA champions return only three starters, but that shouldn't be a problem.
6. West Chester Rustin (17-7). The Golden Knights should be solid on the defensive end. And with six starters returning, Rustin can compete in the Ches-Mont as well as return to the PIAA Class AAA state tournament.
7. Lower Merion (16-1). The Aces are young but return a solid core from a team that registered 12 straight shutouts last year. The defensive unit will be strong. But who will score the goals?
8. Neshaminy (15-1-3). Never count the Redskins out of the Suburban One National race, especially with senior defender Jamen Rowan and senior forward Kenny Herrmann back. The defending conference champs have a blend of young and seasoned players.
9. Conestoga (18-6-1). The Pioneers got hot late last season en route to an appearance in the PIAA Class AAA state quarterfinals. They return four starters.
10. Lansdale Catholic (13-7). Seniors Scott Jacobs and Jake Saba anchor the defending District 12 Class AA champs. The Crusaders advanced to the Catholic League final and the PIAA Class AA state tournament last year.
Under consideration (listed alphabetically): Bensalem (17-5), Downingtown West (17-7-1), Roman Catholic (11-8-1), Souderton (8-10-2).
- Kate Harman