By Luke Krausse
Coach: Griff Fowler
Record last year: 16-4-1
Players to watch: Hawkins Adcock, Carlos Padilla, and Tyler Gross
Thomas Dale will be hungry to return to the state tournament after a first-round loss in 2019. Dale will be defensively strong as Adcock, Padilla, and Gross will take the lead. Adcock’s soccer IQ will push him and the Knights to succeed. Padilla and Gross are both defensive playmakers.
Seniors on the roster: Hawkins Adcock, Tyler Gross , Carlos Padilla, Chris Kuda, Emmanuel Oyewole, Mike Oyewole, Connor West, Alex Escobar, Louie-Xavier Bilodeau
Keys to success: Thomas Dale will need to be organized and self disciplined. With younger players on the roster, consistent offensive options will need to be found. If the newer players buy into Fowler’s system, there may be only a slight drop-off from last year.
Coach: Gabriel Hochstetler
Record last year: 12-6, advanced to regional semi-finals
Players to watch: David Muniz, Luis Vasquez, Edwin Romero
Meadowbrook will have a well-balanced attack at all three levels. Muniz, who earned Region 5B 3rd team honors, will help lead the offensive charge. He led the team with 14 assists. Joining Muniz on the 5B All-Region 3rd team was left back Vasquez, a top defender was a scoring touch. Romero recorded ten goals and four assists during his freshman season, and he is a player Hochstetler should be able to rely on.
Seniors on the roster: Alfredo Alfaro, Abel Degante, David Estrada, Ruben Garcia, Edwin Martinez, David Muniz, Kevin Urbina, Daniel Valasquez, Luis Vasquez
Keys to success: An experienced defense should help Meadowbrook go far again in 2020. Meadowbrook’s roster is comprised of a group of guys who love the game and should push each other to success throughout the season.
Coach: Frasier “Trey” Brickhouse
Record last year: 7-7-1
Players to watch: Seth Cunningham, Aiden Redmon, Max Olson, Adam Braithwaite, and Zach Smith
Brickhouse, new to the program, will look to improve team defense, already a strong offensive team. Cunningham and Redmon combined to score 27 goals in 2019. Olson and Smith will man the midfield, and Braithwaite is in goal.
Seniors on the roster: Seth Cunningham, Aubrey Cavey, John Follis
Keys to success: Brickhouse is planning to focus on remaining committed to his team’s philosophy, staying disciplined with their shape on defense, and building on the chemistry of his core group of returning upperclassmen.
Coach: Bobby Clarke
Record last year: 5-9-1
Players to watch: Kevin Ruiz, Myles Childs, and Gerson Lizama
After a bit of a down year, the Skyhawks are hungry to improve. Midfielder Kevin Ruiz will be the leader for L.C. Bird. The team’s top scorer and, an All-Region honoree, Ruiz will be helped out by Childs, who can score in key moments. Defensively, Lizama, a junior, will return to anchor the center defensive line.
Seniors on the roster: Kevin Ruiz, Elliot Grawe, Ben Galini, Daniel Kim, Myles Childs, Brandt Counts
Key to success: Bird’s key to success is to play its own degree of defense and to avoid giving up the easy goal. The Skyhawks have a very young roster that may start two or three freshmen this year.