May 14, 2013

Nike/US Lacrosse West Region Report

by Todd Karpovich | LaxMagazine.com

Related: National Top 25 | Northeast | Mid-Atlantic | Midwest | South

Top Performers

Jake Kennedy, Torrey Pines (Calif.)

Kennedy had 12 saves as the Falcons avenged an earlier season loss to rival La Costa Canyon with a 4-3 victory. Kennedy will play in college at Bucknell

Blake Knobloch, Regis Jesuit (Colo.)

Knobloch scored the game-winning goal with three second left to lift Regis Jesuit to a 7-6 victory over Mullen (Colo.). Knobloch has 29 goals on the season and leads the Raiders into the semifinals against defending champion Arapahoe (Colo.).

Ryan Harnisch, St Margaret's (Calif.)

The Denver commit went 20-for-23 on faceoffs in a 12-8 victory over Corona del Mar (Calif.) for the Orange County championship. He then went 22-for-26 in a 15-8 victory over Harvard-Westlake (Calif.) in the US Lacrosse CIF Southern-Section championship.

Games to Watch

Eastside Catholic (Wash.) at Skyline (Wash) – May 14

The Crusaders enter the game 10-2 and can clinch the Metro Conference championship with a victory. Skyline (11-7) is looking to build some momentum heading into the state playoffs.

Arapahoe (Colo.) vs. Regis Jesuit (Colo.) – May 18

Arapahoe looks to take a big step in defending its state title with a semifinal game against a tough Regis Jesuit team. Arapahoe aims to win its fourth state title in six years. Regis Jesuit won its only state championship in 2011.

1. St. Ignatius Prep (Calif.), 21-1

The Wildcats have established themselves as one of the nation's elite programs. St. Ignatius bounced back from a loss to Chaminade (N.Y.) with four consecutive victories, outscoring opponents 71-20. The Wildcats closed out the regular season game with a 9-8 victory over Bellarmine Prep (Calif.) for their fourth consecutive West Catholic Athletic League championship.

2. Torrey Pines (Calif.), 14-3

The Falcons avenged an earlier season loss to La Costa Canyon (Calif.) by winning the rematch 4-3. That victory was the catalyst for two more victories over Bishop's School (Calif.) and Carlsbad (Calif.), resulting in a No. 1 seed in the section playoffs.

3. La Costa Canyon (Calif.), 16-3

After losing to rival Torrey Pines, the Mavericks bounced back with victories over Rancho Bernardo (Calif.) and Coronado (Calif.). La Costa Canyon takes on a tough San Marcos (Calif.) in the playoffs and could very well see Torrey Pines again for a rubber match later in the postseason.

4. Cherry Creek (Colo.), 12-5

The Bruins earned the top seed in the state playoffs by closing out the regular season with two victories. Cherry Creek opened its playoffs run with victories over Denver East (Colo.) in the first round and Colorado Academy (Colo.) in the quarterfinals.

5. St. Margaret's Episcopal (Calif.), 21-4

The Tartans continued their impressive run with a 12-8 victory over Corona del Mar (Calif.) for the Orange County championship. St. Margaret's followed that up with a 15-8 victory over Harvard-Westlake (Calif.) in the US Lacrosse CIF Southern-Section championship. The Tartans are riding an 18-game winning streak and have not lost since March 19.

6. Bellevue (Wash.), 16-2

The Wolverines have established themselves as the team to beat in the Washington State playoffs by putting together another impressive campaign. Bellevue has yet to lose a game to an in-state opponent and closes out the regular season on the road against Curtis (Wash.) and Skyline (Wash.).

7. Corona del Mar (Calif.), 18-3

The Sea Kings lost 12-7 to St. Margaret's Episcopal (Calif.) for the Orange County championship. Nonetheless, Corona del Mar continues to be one of the top programs on the West Coast and reload for next season.

8. Cathedral Catholic (Calif.), 18-2

The Dons are riding a 15-game winning streak. Cathedral Catholic earned a No. 4 seed in the CIF San Diego Section Open Division boys' lacrosse playoffs.

9. Regis Jesuit (Colo.), 13-5

The Raiders grabbed some momentum heading into the playoffs with three consecutive victories to close out the regular season. Regis Jesuit then knocked off Highland Ranch (Colo.) and Mullen (Colo.) in the playoffs.

10. Arapahoe (Colo.), 14-3

The Warriors rebounded from a loss to Regis Jesuit in the regular season with a victory over Mountain Vista (Colo.). Arapahoe advanced in the state playoffs and beat Mountain Vista before upsetting No. 2 seed Columbine (Colo.).

News and notes

The best against the best

A victory over La Costa Canyon helped propel Torrey Pines into the top seed of the CIF San Diego Section Open Division boys' lacrosse playoffs.

The Falcons will play the No. 8 seed Rancho Bernardo next weekend. Torrey Pines coach Jon Zissi is in favor of the new playoff format.

"We play a dangerous Rancho Bernardo team on Saturday in round one," Zissi said. "The Open Division is a good idea – pits the best against the best, so there is one true champion of San Diego."

La Costa Canyon earned the second seed and plays No. 7 seed San Marcos (Calif.). If the rankings hold, Torrey Pines and La Costa Canyon would play for a third time this season, this time for the title. The teams split their regular season meetings and have played four consecutive one-goal games; with two going double overtime.

A surging Cathedral Catholic team earned the third seed and will play No. 6 Bishop's School. Poway is the fourth-seeded team and will play No. 5 Coronado.

Upsets in Colorado

The Colorado state playoffs opened and with two lower seeds pulling off upsets to advance to the semifinals.

Top-seeded Cherry Creek overcame a one-goal halftime deficit to knock off No. 9 Colorado Academy 8-6. The Bruins' John Eansor got the go-ahead goal in the third quarter.

Cherry Creek plays No 5 seed Kent Denver in the semifinals May 15 at All City Stadium in Denver. The Sun Devils cruised by No. 4 Fort Collins (Colo.) 13-7. Billy Lane and Jaden Franklin led the way with each scoring four goals.

Kent Denver beat Cherry Creek 11-9 in the regular season.

On the other side of the bracket, No. 7 seed defending champion Arapahoe upended No. 2 Columbine 11-6 to advance. Tyler Widlund led the way with four goals.

The Warriors take on No. 3 Regis Jesuit in the other semifinal May 15. The Raiders got by No. 6 Mullen 7-6 with Blake Knobloch getting the game-winner with three seconds left.

Regis Jesuit beat Arapahoe 9-6 in the regular season.

The finals are set for May 18 at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.

Note: The Nike/US Lacrosse Regional rankings will not necessarily reflect the same order as the Nike/US Lacrosse National Top 25 poll, which is voted on by US Lacrosse area representatives and Lacrosse Magazine contributors, who compile the regional rankings.

Check back to LaxMagazine.com every other Tuesday throughout the high school season for updates to the Nike/US Lacrosse Regional Boys' Top 10 rankings and the Nike/US Lacrosse National Boys' Top 25.


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