We got busy passing out gear, checking rosters and writing practice plans.  Apologies for the delay, but hey, an evening stroll is better than nothing at all right?  Games kick off the back end of this week with several non-league contests and area jamborees.  One more preview before the first faceoff.  Time to get excited!

 

Division II Preview:

 

New programs have surfaced at Monroe and Kennedy High Schools.  After a season organizing at the JV level, Shoreline (Shorewood and Shorecrest) is now a varsity program.  The Franklin program will spend the year reorganizing at the JV level.  The dissolution of the Lynnwood program gave rise to the birth of the program now at Edmonds.  With Overlake, Vashon and Seattle Prep joining the ranks, Division II is home to 32 varsity programs in 2012.  Most conferences house five or six programs though you will notice in odd imbalance in the Evergreen Conference with only four programs.  This occurred as an expected new program in the Vancouver area (Union HS) had to unfortunately pull out of the varsity ranks in the Evergreen Conference.  Scheduling and alignment had already been completed and the easiest adjustments left the conference with four.  The Eastern Conference is no more as the league looked to better integrate the eastern programs.  Subsequently, the Metro Conference has grown and split in two.  The Skagit and Evergreen Conference each receive two playoff berths while the other four conferences each receive three.

 

TEAM OUTLOOKS:

(In Alphabetical Order within each conference)

 

Metro North Conference

Ballard – After graduating 10 seniors from last year’s 6-11 team some would say this is a rebuilding year.  Don’t let the Beavers hear you say that; a ton of juniors return with Varsity experience led by attackman, Jacob Marks.  Sophomore midfielder, John DeGarmo had a breakout season last year and will help lead the offense this season.

 

Blanchet – The Braves have been to the quarterfinals two years in a row, but graduated 11 which could make that streak tough to continue.  Zane Zielke is the top returning scorer and has big shoes to fill if Blanchet is to have a repeat performance of last year.  Junior defender, Henry Morris must be the rock of a young defense looking to improve.

 

Nathan Hale – Midfielders Alex Wright and Jack McIntire will carry the scoring load for Raiders, a team that lost 7 to graduation.  Further, Kris Snider return to the coaching ranks (last coached at Garfield), stepping in for the departed Chris Panos (now at Eastlake).  For Hale to make the playoffs, sophomore goalkeep, Aiden Iodice must step up and role players must surface on defense.

 

Roosevelt – With Eli Harmon gone to graduation, the Roughriders will lean heavily on senior, Parker Williamson for scoring.  Junior goalie, Kevin Ault is an All-Conference returner and will again anchor the defense.

 

Selah – The new league shake up has landed Selah in the Metro North.  After finishing third, two years in a row in the Eastern Conference, the Vikings will be looking to senior midfielder, Klayton Fleming to get the offense going and make a playoff run.

 

Shoreline – After a very successful season at the junior varsity level, Shoreline is primed and ready to make moves this season.  Still very young, Coach Weaver’s boys have no easy task in a tough six team conference and it may be a year before we see Shoreline in the playoffs.

 

 

Metro South Conference

Garfield – Juniors Carl Barnes, Cedric Rhodes and Jackson Lanning all return from last year’s squad that reached the State Semifinals, so expectations are much bigger for the Bulldogs this year.  On paper, the only weakness may be on defense, but senior, Spencer Terrain will work hard to change that.  Either way, there is no doubt that the Bulldogs are one of the favorites to take home the DII trophy this season.

 

Highline – It is hard to tell how Highline will be affected by start of the Kennedy program as a double digit amount of players have transferred over.  However it is known that Highline will always play hard, fast and physical.  They are very athletic and will run oppoenents up and down the field.

 

Kennedy –Kennedy inherited some very athletic lacrosse talent from the Highline program upon the establishment of the new program at John F. Kennedy High School.  Always tough for a new team to make a run at the playoffs but being that some have playoff experience with Highline, anything is possible.

 

Seattle Prep – After a disappointing season in Division I, the Panthers find themselves reassigned to a Division II conference with more familiar Metro opponents.  However, they find themselves in the heart of one of the toughest conferences in the state.  Seniors Cassidy Miller and Matt Feider will undoubtedly feed from their D1 experience to help with the transition.

 

Three Rivers – As the leading scorer in Division II, with 5.55 pts/game, senior attack, Drew Wade will help a seasoned and talented Coyotes squad make a strong push towards the playoffs.  All-Eastern Conference defender, Trevor McGuirk leads a tough, big defense.

 

Vashon – Senior attackman, Luke Hembree will lead Vashon as it makes its return to Division II.  The Vultures captured the Division II crown back in 2005 before spending the past six years at the Division I level.  They will need Hembree to do plenty of scoring as Vashon graduated three defenders, so much inexperience on the defensive end.

 

 

Olympic Conference

Gig Harbor –The Fire graduated just three from last year’s playoff team and are ready to make a push at unseating Klahowya as the top team in the Olympic.  Junior Cody Olsen returns at attack as the leading scorer and Gig Harbor returns their entire starting defense.

 

KlahowyaThe Eagles are perennial playoff team and this year will be no different. Further they are the crown jewel of the Olympic Conference until someone else shows otherwise.  However, they have often been tripped up early in the state playoffs, so the question is: Can they go deeper than the first round?  Another question has surfaced: Can they keep the surging Gig Harbor team off their heels?  Seniors Nick Johansson and John Wolfram are prepared for the challenge.

 

North Kitsap – North Kitsap made the playoffs for the first time last year and the Hack (Duncan and Aaron) Brothers plan to make it back.  Kenny Miller must help N.K. improve its defense if they are going to continue their success in the Olympic Conference. 

 

Port Angeles – Replacing goalie Julian Walls will be hard but the Mountaineers graduated just five from the roster.  Senior Troy Gallagher is the only returning 10 point scorer and he is expected to carry the load this year.

 

South Kitsap – A new coach brings a new attitude to S.K. and that is what the Wolves need. With a team of fairly new players, the Wolves are focusing on the basics.  Having lost 7 games by fewer than four goals a year ago, the Wolves know how to battle and will put up a fight. 

 

 

Evergreen Conference

Liberty – The Patriots return virtually the entire team and bring in a slew of talented freshman for the second year in a row.  Liberty showed huge strides in the second half of last year and should carry that momentum into this season.  This year, the team has enough senior leadership to make a run for the playoffs as Overlake may be the only squad with more talent in the Evergreen.

 

Mt. Si – Lacrosse is booming in the Snoqualmie Valley as Coach Kizer has enough out for Varsity, JV and “C” level squads this year.  So, would appear only a matter of time before the Wildcats see some success.  Junior midfielder, Matt Mahrer is the top returning offensive talent and Eli Gogan is a man child on defense.

 

Overlake – A very talented Overlake team finds itself with a thin roster, a new coaching staff and a new division to play in.  The move of boy’s soccer to the spring at The Overlake School certainly didn’t help numbers turning out for lacrosse.  Further, longtime Head Coach, Henry Valentine has stepped down and so the Owls will now be led by Greg Butler.  Coach Butler has experience with several programs, most recently taking Lake Washington to the Division II Semifinals back in 2010.  Junior midfielder, Erik Risa will be the best face-off guy in Division I as he was a groundball magnet at the Division I level.  Attackman, Barrett Janness should be the Owls top scorer.

 

Redmond – Replacing the departed do-it-all netminder, Niko Shewey will be tough, but Redmond returns its top three scorers in Liam Watkins, Casey Downey and Harrison Stankey.  New coach, Bob Roble hopes this offensive power can carry the squad until the defense rebuilds.

 

 

Cascade Conference

Edmonds – The program looks to rebuild lacrosse in the area filling a void left by the dissolution of the Lynnwood program.  The Chiefs will showcase plenty of talent, including junior attackman, Nick Peters and junior defender, Cam Warren; each have Division I experience with Lynnwood.  Edmonds should have enough talent to make a run at the playoffs.

 

Everett – The Seawolves ended last season strong and hope to continue that momentum into 2012.  Senior attackman, Chas Stringfellow is one of Division II’s best and will again be asked to carry the load. Junior attackman, Ian strong has proven to be a great scorer as well. The strength on defense lies in goal with a much improved and very driven Merrick Rutledge.

 

Monroe – Another program sprouted in Snohomish County as former Mukilteo coach, Owen Corddry takes the help for the newly formed Bearcats.  They hope to rely on the experience of a few coming over from the Snohomish program.

 

Providence – The Highlanders are deeper than ever before, which is a bad thing for the rest of the Cascade Conference.  Leading scorer Caleb Moisant is back at attack, and goalie David Wartes has All-Conference potential.  All-Cascade Conference a year ago, senior Luke Morris is back on defense.  Providence is a playoff team with hopes to stay healthy and push a bit further this season. 

 

Snohomish – Many coaches are picking Snohomish as the team to beat in Division II this year though several Metro teams may beg to differ.  The Panthers are at the very least the favorite to take the Cascade crown but Providence will have a say.  Snohomish lost some depth with the birth of the Monroe program though they still appear deeper than the rest of the conference.  Senior midfielder, Brandon Todd returns alongside junior attackman, Austin Tippitt.  Add a transfer, midfielder Gabe Girgus (Lynnwood) to the mix and you have a very dangerous scoring attack.

 

Wenatchee –Wenatchee graduated some very key pieces in goalie Thomas Bass and defender Quinn Carlson.  Yet, they still have one of the top offensive threats in all of Division II, senior midfielder Mitchell Parks.  Wenatchee should again be a playoff squad.

 

 

Skagit Conference

North County – Returning all but three from last year’s quarterfinal team, the Cavaliers are hungry to get further.  Led by Team Finland’s U-19 midfielder, Treven Salminen, scoring should not be a problem for the Cavs.  Salminem teams with juniors, Devin Conner and Markus Fakkema to form potent offensive group.  Junior defender, Marcus De Boer will anchor an improving defense.

 

San Juan – San Juan only graduated one, but that one, Cody West, was an important part of the offense.  Attackman Sean Hills must fill the void offensively.  Dragons return every defender, a big help to the multi-year rebuilding process they face.

 

Skagit Valley – Skagit Valley graduated some key pieces, but has a good core of players returning to help defend their Skagit Conference Title.   Senior defender, Lucas Beh and junior midfielder Mac Burnett each bring a bevy of toughness and hustle to the Flyers squad.

 

Stanwood – Boasting one of the west coast’s best players in junior LSM, Frank Medlicott, the Spartans will fight for one of the two coveted Skagit Conference playoff spots.  Medlicott can play almost any position but he can’t play them all at the same time.  How the Spartans do will rest on how the rest of the team steps up.

 

Whatcom – Losing a few key defensive players to graduation and transfers leaves a lot of defensive responsibility on junior Nick Estrada.  Junior midfielder, Chance Clymer must step up his scoring as the Warriors also graduated their leading scorer.  But don’t call this a rebuilding year, this is a young and talented group.

 

 

2012 - Division II - Preseason All-State Teams

 

 

1st team

2nd Team

3rd Team

ATT

Drew Wade SR, Three Rivers

Cassidy Miller SR, Seattle Prep

Luke Hembree SR, Vashon

 

Chas Stringfellow SR, Everett

Cedric Rhodes JR, Garfield

Marcus Fakkema JR, North County

 

Nick Peters JR,  Edmonds

Barrett Jenness JR, Overlake

Caleb Moisant JR, Providence

 

 

 

HM - Cody Olsen JR, Gig harbor

 

 

 

 

MID

Mitchell Parks SR, Wenatchee

Alex Wright SR, Nathan Hale

Mckay Mitchell SR, Three Rivers

 

Brandon Todd SR, Snohomish

Nick Johanson SR, Klahowya

Chance Clymer JR, Whatcom

 

Treven Salminen JR, North County

Austin Pruitt SR, Blanchet

John DeGarmo SO, Ballard

 

Erik Risa JR, Overlake

Jackson Lanning JR, Garfield

Gabe Girgus, JR Snohomish

 

 

 

HM - Mac Burnett JR, Skagit Valley

 

 

 

 

DEF

Frank Medlicott JR, Stanwood

Bryce Remington SR, Overlake

John Micahel Cosper JR, Gig Harbor

 

Davyd Powell SO, Snohomish

Matt Feider SR, Seattle Prep

Nick Estrada JR, Whatcom

 

Cameron Warren JR, Edmonds

John Wolfram SR, Klahowya

Lucas Beh SR, Skagit Valley

 

Eric Moisant SR, Providence

Henry Morris JR, Blanchet

Marcus DeBoer JR, North County

 

 

 

 

G

Merrick Rutledge SR, Everett

David Wartes JR, Providence

Zach Traynor SR, Blanchet

 

 

Lacrosse The Country…

·         Sam Snow (Bainbridge) has 11 goals in 4 games helping Fairfield to a 4-0 start.  The Stags last 3 wins have all come in overtime!

·         Greg Mahony (Mercer Island) posted 2g,2a to help Yale beat Albany and jump to a 2-0 start on the season.

·         A hat-trick for Maryland’s Drew Snider (Garfield) in a win over Duke as the Terrapins are off to a 3-0 start.

·         Kevin Powers (Issaquah) was named the Western Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association’s offensive player of the week for Dominican.

·         Taylor Wisman (Northshore) tallied an assist in helping RIT to a season opening win over Endicott.

 

Lacrosse Four Thought…

Which teams do you feel have a legitimate shot at the Division II state championship?

Who did we leave off of the Preseason Division II All-State Teams?

What team is most likely to surprise this season?

Will any Division II players make noise for All-American status?

 

Parting Shots…

·         “You guys missed Garret Stockdale of Bellarmine Prep at Midfield.  Last year he was the 8th leading scorer in the state averaging 4.70 points/game as a sophomore tallying 36g and 11a in 10 games.  He’s being recruited by Amherst and Fairfield and was part of West Coast Starz.  Not sure how he slipped under the radar.” – BP Fan

We’ll give a shout out to the best emails of the week and include your comments/quotes in next week’s Sunday Stroll. 

 

Comments, edits or corrections?  Feed us your thoughts… Time to hear from you… Bring it!          EMAIL: TheSundayStroll@gmail.com