Here’s the good news – high school soccer is alive and well on Long Island.
Despite concerns about academy players not playing HS ball, and questions about the level of play here on the Island, local teams have been battling it out in competitive divisions over the past month and have earned mention not only in local polls, but in the NSCAA’s regional rankings as well.
Ten Long Island teams (4 boys and 6 girls) have made their way into the most recent NSCAA Region II Top 15 rankings, led by the Hicksville (#2) and Brentwood (#3) boys, and the South Side (#1) and Northport (#2) girls, who are in the top five.
On the boys’ side, Hicksville is led by goalkeeper Brian McPartland, who recently made seven saves in the Comets 1-0 victory. Brentwood’s leader is returning All-Long Island player Ever Torres. A prolific goal-scorer a year ago, Torres had been recording more assists than goals this season, but he put four balls in the back of the net in two games this week, including a 3-goal, 1-assist game against Floyd. Another team that didn’t make the rankings, but is worth a look is Half Hollow Hills West, who are 49-0-1 in their last 50 regular season games since 2009.
Fall Boys – NSCAA Region II - Poll 3 - September 18, 2012
1 Martin Luther King Jr. (New York, N.Y.)
2 Hicksville (Hicksville, N.Y.)
3 Brentwood (Brentwood, N.Y.)
4 Fordham Prep (Bronx, N.Y.)
5 Pittsford Mendon (Pittsford, N.Y.)
6 Shenendehowa (Clifton Park, N.Y.)
7 Francis Lewis (Queens, N.Y.)
8 Liverpool (Liverpool, N.Y.)
9 St. Francis Prep (Fresh Meadows, N.Y.)
10 Webster Schroeder (Webster, N.Y.)
11 St. Anthony's (Melville, N.Y.)
12 Sachem East (Farmingville, N.Y.)
13 Vestal (Vestal, N.Y.)
14 Newburgh Free Academy (Newburgh, N.Y.)
15 Cicero North Syracuse (North Syracuse, N.Y.)
In girls’ soccer on Long Island, the name South Side HS has become synonymous with success. So it comes as no surprise to see them at the top of the Region II poll last week. It’s also no surprise that they are undefeated at this point in the season. But after posting a shutout of North Shore on the 21st, the Cyclones had gone six games without allowing a single goal! Now that’s impressive!
Not to be outdone, the Friars of St. Anthony’s have strung together five straight shutouts, while the top team in Suffolk County, the Northport Tigers, have posted three straight 5-0 victories. The other team to watch in Nassau County is the Lady Dalers of Farmingdale. They ran roughshod over Nassau in league play last year, but stumbled in the playoffs. This season they seem to be back with a vengeance, jumping out to a 5-0 start that includes wins over perennial powers Massapequa, MacArthur, and Calhoun (the team that eliminated them from the playoffs in 2011). Keep an eye on Garden City as well. Recent wins over Cold Spring Harbor and Clarke have the Trojans in position to challenge South Side come the postseason.
Fall Girls - Region II - Poll 3 - September 18, 2012
1 South Side (Rockville Centre, N.Y.)
2 Northport (Northport, N.Y.)
3 Arlington (LaGrangeville, N.Y.)
4 Niskayuna (Niskayuna, N.Y.)
5 Fairport (Fairport, N.Y.)
6 St. Anthony's (Melville, N.Y.)
7 Islip (Islip, N.Y.)
8 Vestal (Vestal, N.Y.)
9 John Jay (Hopewell Junction, N.Y.)
10 Garden City (Garden City, N.Y.)
11 Cornwall Central (New Windsor, N.Y.)
12 MacArthur (Levittown, N.Y.)
13 Orchard Park (Orchard Park, N.Y.)
14 Schalmont (Schenectady, N.Y.)
15 Oneonta (Oneonta, N.Y.)