H.S. Girls’ and Boys’ Soccer teams still in the running for No. 1 in South Jersey

by Marc Narducci | Nov 3, 2021
H.S. Girls’ and Boys’ Soccer teams still in the running for No. 1 in South Jersey

 The South Jersey Soccer Coaches Tournament often is a huge help in determining the No. 1 team in both boys’ and girls’ soccer in the area.

The tournament consists of 16 of the top teams in South Jersey and the champion has to win four games to get there.

This year Ocean City earned the girls title with a 3-2 win over Bishop Eustace. Cinnaminson earned the boys’ Coaches Tournament title with a 2-1 victory over Kingsway.

In both instances, Ocean City’s girls’ and Cinnaminson’s boys’ were the consensus No. 1 team in South Jersey entering the championship.

So the question now is could either lose that standing?

Anything is possible, but if each would earn a sectional title, with Ocean City competing in South Jersey Group 3 and Cinnaminson in South Jersey Group 2, that could cement things.

The only way it likely wouldn’t is if neither won a state title and a South Jersey team won a state championship, but again, it would depend on the circumstances.

Here is a look at the race for No. 1.

Boys’ Soccer

Cinnaminson, was the highest ranked team from the seven-county South Jersey area in last week’s NJ.com Top 20. The Pirates were No. 15. Delran, also a SJ Group 2 school, was No. 16 and Group 4 Shawnee was the third South Jersey at No. 17.

Delran didn’t participate in the Coaches Tournament, so that would factor in the any final rankings. What if the Bears beat Cinnaminson in the SJ Group 2 Tournament, then what happened?

It likely would open the door for a team like Shawnee, which won the area’s best conference, the Olympic Conference American Division, but was upset by 15th seeded Middle Township in the Coaches Tournament, losing on penalty kicks after the teams played to a scoreless draw.

Shawnee’s only true loss was 3-2 to Washington Township, a team the Renegades also played to a scoreless draw.

Washington Township’s losses were to Cherokee, Eastern and then to Kingsway in a Coaches Tournament quarterfinal. A strong postseason run in Group 4 would likely leave the Minutemen in contention for the top spot in South Jersey.

Kingsway (14-2-1) tied Clearview for the Tri-County Royal title and beat Cherokee, Washington Township, and West Deptford to reach the finals of the Coaches Tournament. If the Dragons can win SJ Group 4, they would likely remain a contender for No. 1.

Girls’ Soccer

Ocean City (19-1) suffered its only loss to Mainland, a team it also beat. Led by 56-goal scorer Summer Reimet, the Red Raiders have been dominant.

Ocean City and Eastern have been the main teams batting for the No. 1 spot. Eastern won South Jersey’s toughest division, the Olympic American. The Vikings (17-2-1) have split with Cherokee and are 0-1-1 against Bishop Eustace, losing to the Crusaders most recently in a Coaches Tournament second round game.

Bishop Eustace, with its close loss to Ocean City is another team still in the running for South Jersey’s top spot. The Crusaders will compete in South Jersey, where powerful Rutgers Prep is the favorite. If Eustace can win SJ Non-Public B, the Crusaders should be right in the running for the top spot.

There might be another team or two to emerge, but Ocean City, Eastern and Bisho Eustace seem like the main candidates.

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Author: Marc Narducci

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