News-Herald boys soccer Top of the Crop for Aug. 29


Boys soccer

1: Lake Catholic 4-0

2: University 3-1

3: Beachwood 4-0

4: Mentor 2-1-1

5: Harvey 4-1

6: West Geauga 2-1-1

7: North 2-2

8: Riverside 1-1-1

9: Kenston 2-1

10: Hawken 2-1

Watch list: Kirtland (1-2), Madison (3-1), Andrews Osborne (0-0), Gilmour (1-1-2)

Crop comments: Until proven otherwise, No. 1 in the Crop to begin 2023 is beyond dispute. It's Lake Catholic's spot with a vise grip after a 4-0 start, including a signature 2-1 win at Bay. ... Should the Cougars falter, as usual University is there as a No. 1 candidate. A 3-0 win over Mentor and a 2-1 victory over Strongsville, the latter not US' sharpest performance, shows the makings of a high-caliber side. ... Beachwood is easily a top-three side as well — the sporadic nature of tests on its schedule is not helpful for Crop purposes, but the Bison rightfully aspire for a deep postseason run again. ... From here, with such small sample size, there is plenty of dispute. ... Mentor (US, 3-0) and Harvey (Revere, 5-1) have decisive losses to quality foes. The Cardinals edge out No. 4 on strength of schedule. ... That bottom half of the Crop takes on that configuration for now based on early results but will undoubtedly change in the weeks ahead once more volume and head-to-head competition transpires. ... In the watch list, after consecutive 4-1 losses to West Geauga and Lake Catholic, Kirtland needs to display better form. Andrews Osborne could very well be a Crop side, but with no matches yet, a top-10 placement sight unseen is unfair.

Note: Matches considered through Aug. 28.