By MATT MASSEY
Special to The Seattle Times
The division of power in Class 3A boys soccer appears clear-cut with defending state champion Glacier Peak, Shorecrest and Camas at the top.
These teams appear the class of the state.
Options for the first set of 4A state boys soccer rankings isn’t so definitive at the top. There’s a bunch of contenders, and almost by default, defending champion Stadium of Tacoma, 19-1 a year ago, arrives at No. 1 to start.
But that could change in short order. For now, we’ll go with the teams that have been-there, done-that.
Either one of a pair of Spokane — Ferris and Mead — could be talented enough to take over the No. 1 position along with Marysville-Pilchuck, Beamer and possibly Pasco.
The best race of the boys soccer season likely will come down to WesCo 3A rivals Glacier Peak and Shorecrest, who are both off to 3-0 starts. The narrow choice for the No. 1 position is Glacier Peak.
The difference between the two teams simply could come down to who’s minding the net for the Grizzlies, 6-foot-4 senior Andrew Weakley.
Weakley, headed to Villanova University next fall, could be the next Kasey Keller and possesses many skills to be a quality goalkeeper at the next two levels.
“Glacier Peak, I would think they are the favorites, no doubt,” said Mount Si coach Darren Brown, whose team fell 2-0 and was shut out by the Grizzlies keeper in the 2010 state quarterfinals. “They have the best goalkeeper in the state on their team. He is amazing. He’s huge.
“He’s built like a middle linebacker, but he’s extremely agile. He can stop anything in the ground or in the air. He’s flawless. He’s one of the best keepers I’ve seen in a long time.”
The Grizzles finished off their 2010 title run in 3A without Weakley last year as he was away in Bradenton, Fla., attending a college-soccer showcase event during the semifinals and finals.
“He played with us until the Final Four,” Glacier Peak coach Shannon Murray said of his star shot-stopper. “It’s was hard for him to leave last year. The team told him they had his back. This year, he’ll be there.”
Stadium loses senior forward Dylan Gaydosh, who scored the lone goal in the Tigers’ 1-0 win over Lake Stevens in the 4A title game. Still, they appear to have enough tools to stay at or near the top.
Ferris of Spokane reached the semifinals, but settled for third and are favored to win the Greater Spokane League (GSL). Mead, loser in the first round of state a year ago, should challenge the Saxons.
The ESPN Rise Powerade Fab 50 team rankings include five teams from the state of Washington in their first set of rankings. Shorecrest (3A) checks in at No. 6, Beamer (4A) follows at No. 8, Stadium (4A) at No. 25, Camas (3A0 at No. 27 and Jefferson (4A) at No. 32. Click here for the full ESPN rankings.
Here are The Seattle Times rankings for Class 4A and 3A for Week 1:
1. Stadium (Tacoma) (3-0-0)
2. Ferris (Spokane) (3-1-0)
3. Mead (Spokane) (1-1-0)
4. Marysville-Pilchuck (2-0-0)
5. Beamer (Federal Way) (2-0-0)
6. Pasco (2-0-0)
7. Lake Stevens (1-1-0)
8. Bellarmine Prep (Tacoma) (2-0-0)
9. Garfield (3-0-0)
10. Evergreen (Vancouver) (1-2-0)
On the bubble: Richland, Jackson, Jefferson, Kentwood, Central Valley (Spokane), Gonzaga Prep, Puyallup, Redmond, Roosevelt, Eastlake, Snohomish, Skyline, Mount Rainier.
1. Glacier Peak (Snohomish) (3-0-0)
2. Shorecrest (Shoreline) (3-0-0)
3. Camas (1-1-0)
4. Southridge (Kennewick) (3-0-0)
5. Bainbridge (2-0-0)
6. West Valley (Yakima)
7. Kennewick (2-0-0)
8. Mount Si (Snoqualmie) (1-1-1)
9. Sammamish (Bellevue) (1-0-1)
10. Shorewood (Shoreline) (3-0-0)
On the bubble: Capital (Olympia), Kennedy, O’Dea.
Below is a list of Washington state commitments for college soccer:
2011 PREP BOYS SOCCER VERBAL COMMITS
State of Washington players
NCAA Division I
Beamer – MF Troy Peterson (College of Charleston); F Sean Okoli (Wake Forest).
Walla Walla – GK Andrew Glaeser (Oregon State).
Ballard – F/MF Brent Campbell (Seattle University) Emerald Ridge – GK Shane Haworth (Seattle University).
Jefferson – GK James Oganga (Washington).
O’Dea – MF/D DeAndre Yedlin (Akron); F/D Parker Powell (Boston University).
Camas – MF Nick Palodichuk (Duke); MF/D Drew White (Washington).
Eastside Catholic – MF Bryce Bacic (Loyola Marymount).
Shorecrest – F/MF Glenn Paden (Oregon State).
Lakeside – F Louis Schott (Penn).
Mount Si – GK Ryan Herman (Santa Clara); MF Eric Baumgardner (Humboldt State).
Union (Vancouver) – MF Michael Granados (Seattle University).
Glacier Peak – GK Andrew Weakley (Villanova).
Sammamish – D Nick Rooney (Dartmouth).
Lake Washington – MF Taylor Stapf (Vermont).
Ridgefield – F Travis Helm (Seattle University).
NCAA Division II
Garfield – MF Sean Russell (Seattle Pacific).
Stadium – GK Eric Owen (St. Martin’s).
Skyline – F Braxton Griffin (Humboldt State); Kyle Olmstead (Eckerd College).
Mount Vernon – F/MF Nathan Barber (St. Martin’s).
Sehome – F Pat Cole (Western Washington.
Bellinghmam – MF Matt Sanchez (Western Washington).
Newport – F Michael Kahn (Bentley College).
Seattle Prep – MF Sam Wahl (Humboldt State).
King’s – MF Ryan Gamache (Humboldt State)
Chrysalis School (Woodinville) – MF Jacob Bechtel (Humboldt State).
NCAA Division III
Jesuit Portland – F Jake Bishop, Vancouver, Wash. (Claremont McKenna).
Southridge – D Bill Landefeld (Whitman).
Skyline – Pranav Narayana (Manhattanville); Evan Kamber (Vassar College).
Sammamish – GK Stuart Ellsworth (Whitman).
Interlake – MF Jeremy Carlson (Centre College).
DeSales – MF Sean Williams (Whitman).
Tri-Cities Prep – MF Joe Virden (Whitman).