So, how was everyone’s first week of practice?  Are you itching for games yet?  If so, then you’re in luck because the action begins Friday, March 11th!  In addition to several non-league games taking place in the area, Eastlake is traveling southeast to Boise while Skyline begins their season down in Vegas.  Nathan Hale, North County and Eastside Catholic are also hosting weekend jamborees so head on out to take in some preseason action. 


Division II Previews:

(In Alphabetical Order within each conference)


Metro Conference

Ballard – The only team new to the league this season, Ballard split from the Roosevelt program.  Ballard will have plenty of experience returning including senior defender, Joe Kirkendall.


Blanchet – The Braves only graduated five from last year’s quarterfinal team. With the impending return of senior, Dylan Evans, this team could make a serious run.


Franklin – The Quakers have been rebuilding the last few years, but with no coaching change this year and a handful of core returners, this could be an exciting year for them.


Garfield – The Bulldogs only graduated two players.  Junior midfielder, Justin Guilty, sophomore attack, Cedric Rhodes and senior midfielder, Andy Boelter all return to make Garfield a tough squad to look past.


Nathan Hale – With leading scorer Ian Harvey gone, the Raiders will look to talented junior, Alex Wright to carry the scoring load.  The big question though: Can Hale replace departed goalkeeper, Spencer Adams?


Roosevelt – The strength of the Roughriders sits between the pipes with sophomore goalie Kevin Ault in the net.  Senior, Jack Truitt will be asked to handle the scoring load again.



Olympic Conference

Gig Harbor –Replacing netminder Aaron Wolfe will be a tough task, but he is the only graduate from last season’s playoff team.  Sophomore, Cody Olsen is back at attack for a squad expecting a deeper run in the playoffs this season.


KlahowyaLosing eight to graduation usually means a team is in for some sort of transition, however the Eagles returns their top three scorers from last year.   Klahowya is a perennial playoff team and this year will be no different. 


North Kitsap – North Kitsap will need junior Duncan Hack to pick up some of the scoring slack this year.  David Harley must help N.K. improve its defense if they are to make noise within their own conference. 


Port Angeles – Senior, Jacob Dostie will be a force to be reckoned with yet again this season.  Goalie, Julian Walls is back as well to help give the Mountaineers their best chance to move forward in the playoffs since 2005.


South Kitsap – Upon graduating their top two scorers, Kellen Kennedy must now shoulder the scoring load for the Wolves.  However they return all defenders and that experience will be extremely useful as they seek a playoff berth.



Eastern Conference

Selah – Tough season a year ago.  Now, senior midfielder, Jared Grubenhoff and the rest of the Vikings are ready to make a move to the top of the East.


Three Rivers –Junior, Drew Wade will help a young and talented Coyote squad move past last year’s disappointing .500 season. Trevor McGuirk will need to fill his brother’s shoes in leading the defensive unit.


Wenatchee –Wenatchee is hungry to reach the state championship game after losing by just one goal to last year’s eventual state champion Lynnwood squad in the state semifinals.  If senior, Thomas Bass can keep the nets clean and senior defenseman, Quinn Carlson can keep opposing attackmen on lock down, reaching the title game shouldn’t be an issue.



Cascade Conference

Stanwood – The Spartans graduated five key players from last year’s playoff team, including four year starter Jesse Aldapa. However, sophomore defender, Frank Medlicott has been named one of the west coast’s best sophomores and should lead them back to the playoffs for the third year in a row.


Providence – They may lack in depth but this squad doesn’t lack experience.  Providence returns everyone from an albeit thin squad, but a group that beat Lynnwood at one point during the regular season last year.  Senior midfielder, Ryan Morris will be the top scoring threat. 


Everett – Formally Silver Lake, Everett will look to improve on last season with a new name, and a new look.  Junior midfielder, Chas Stringfellow will be asked to carry the load again this year while a much improved goaltender, junior, Merrick Rutledge will help limit opposing scoring.


Snohomish – New coach Chris Cote takes charge of a group that graduated a solid core on defense.  Gone too are Nathan Wirtz and Nick Hund, but the Panthers are always a force and will once again be a favorite coming out of the Cascade.  Junior midfielder, Brandon Todd and sophomore attackman, Austin Tippet should lead the revamped offense.


Woodinville – Second year program has a year under their belt and players ready to lead them to the playoffs.  Junior attackman, J.D. Chapman will shoulder the load.  Senior midfielder, Tyler Paris also returns as 20+ goal scorer while senior, Jacob Dransfield will anchor the defense.



Evergreen Conference


Highline – Talented midfielders Isaac Simpson and Scott Bredberg will lead an experienced group.  Twelve players with varsity experience return and this could be the year Highline makes the playoffs, maybe even as the #2 team in the Evergreen behind only Sammamish.


Liberty – Another second year program, the Patriots graduated just three players and more moving in from the Issaquah youth ranks to bolster a growing program.  Top point producer, sophomore, Forrest Hurley is quite the athlete as he also played four games in goal last year.


Mt. Si – Wildcats graduated just two players from a small first year roster of 19.  With the roster up over 30 this season the future looks bright as they look to grow the game out in the Snoqualmie Valley.  Sophomore, attack, Matt Mahrer is the top returning scorer.  You might recognize the last name of sophomore, defender Eli Gogan as his dad was a former NFL lineman.


Redmond – Mustangs have a stud in net, junior, Nico Shewey and return second leading scorer, sophomore, attack, Casey Downey.  The squad is young and still looking to return to the form of a few years ago before the formation of the Lake Washington program.


Sammamish – After graduating ten, the Totems are still the clear favorite in the Evergreen but must find a way to challenge themselves in the regular season so they can compete come playoff time under new coach, Tyler Farrar.  Totems only graduated three players and junior attackman, Brian Headland is one of Division II’s best.  He’ll be flanked in the midfield by senior, Matt Young while senior, Sam Chapman anchors the defense.



Skagit Conference

North County – Sophomores Trevin Salminen and Marcus Fakkema will have to step up their play for the Cavaliers to make moves in the Skagit Conference.  Senior Edgar Mendoza will lead the Cavs in scoring again.


San Juan – If any team is rebuilding this year, it is the Dragons.  After appearing in the state championship game last year, the Dragons graduated 14 seniors.  They will have to work hard to rebuild and compete in the Skagit.


Skagit Valley – Skagit Valley graduated some key pieces, but has a good core of players returning.  Sophomore midfielder, Griffin Van Baush and senior goalie, Jordan Johnson have the talent to lead this young team.


Whatcom – A strong defense will be key for the Warriors this year, led by junior, Austin Billiot, sophomore, Nick Estrada, and senior, Kurtis McFadden in goal. Can the offense produce enough goals to support the defense?




2011 - Division II - Preseason All-State Teams



1st team

2nd Team

3rd Team


Brian Headlund SR, Sammamish

Drew Wade JR, Three Rivers

Marcus Fakkema SO, North County


Chas Stringfellow JR, Everett

Edgar Mendoza SR, North County

Isaac Simpson SR, Highline


J.D. Chapman JR, Woodinville

Austin Tippett SO, Snohomish

Casey Downey SO, Redmond






Jared Grubenhoff SR, Selah

Jack Truitt SR, Roosevelt

Edgar Mendoza SR, North County


Tyler Paris SR, Woodinville

Oliver Thomas SR, Providence

Mitchell Parks JR, Wenatchee


Ryan Morris SR, Providence

Griffin Van Baush SO, Skagit Valley

Alex Wright JR, Nathan Hale


Brandon Todd JR, Snohomish

Carl Barnes JR, Garfield

Jacob Dostie SR, Port Angeles






Sam Chapman SR, Sammamish

Joe Kirkendall SR, Ballard

Cole Bailey JR, Port Angeles


Quinn Carlson SR, Wenatchee

Jacob Dransfield SR, Woodinville

Nick Estrada SO, Whatcom


Luke Morris SR, Providence

Kyle Mack SR, Skagit Valley

Marcus DeBoer SO, North County


Frank Medlicott SO, Stanwood

Austin Billiot JR, Whatcom

Sam Shober JR, Snohomish






Thomas Bass SR, Wenatchee

Nico Shewey JR, Redmond

Kevin Ault SO, Roosevelt



Lacrosse The Country…

·         Landon Carr (Curtis) posted his first two goal game as a collegian in Maryland’s one goal loss to defending NCAA Division I champion, Duke.

·         Greg Mahony (Mercer Island) is off to a solid start with 3g, 3a in three wins for Yale.

·         Jon Wettack (Mercer Island) earned his first collegiate point in Geneseo’s game with Nazareth and was even caught on camera


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 games are you most excited to see this season?

Why only one new team in the league this year?  Has the growth in Washington reached a plateau?


Parting Shots…

  • “I agree with Alex Crane as the best middie in the SW, but I'll take Robert Abbott from Puyallup over Carr and Christiansen any day. He plays defense extremely well, tons of ground balls (those that didn't get grabbed by Thomas Brook last year) has speed and faces off. Very disappointed he didn't make the list.” - Ellis


·         “It’s tough to argue any of the first team preseason all-state selections however please take the time to compare these stats with those on the second and third squads: Connor McLeod, Sophomore, Attack, Tacoma – 39g, 4a, 15gb; Brody Lundquist, Senior, Midfield, Tahoma – 25g, 15a, 88gb; Dillon Cavanaugh, Senior, Attack, Curtis- 5g, 27a, 27gb. Who wouldn’t want to play with a guy with a 5 to 1 assist to goal ratio?” – Jeff Neely

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


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