Here are my rankings after watching almost every team play on Saturday...
1. St. Mary's - Solid spine of players with Fladeland, Stecher, Barch, and Gilchrist. But lots of kick and run still, little possession. One major injury away from being non-contenders. Gilchrist was absolutely stellar in net.
2. Century - Not good, but not bad. Good soccer skill.
3. BHS - Not impressed. Even in their win over West Fargo, they got dominated.
4. Mandan/Minot/Jamestown - Not good at all. Usually each of these teams have one or two players that stand out above the rest. I didn't see any from any of those teams. I see Minot making state, just because Jamestown doesn't have Boerger, and Mandan doesn't have anybody.
1. South - Loads of talent. Need to shake off the rust a little bit, and play together more. Favorites in the State.
2. North - Not too scary talent-wise. Reberg and their forward are their two players that stood out. Otherwise I wasn't too impressed.
3. West Fargo - Probably one of the best possessing teams in the state. They need to find a solid goal scorer though. Dark horse team for the state title.
4. Shanley/Red River - Didn't see either team play a lot, but they looked small. I will have to see more of them play. Shanley might just pip RR for the fourth spot, because they have more continuity and didn't lose as much as RR. RR lost a ton of seniors plus all of their coaching staff (save 1 guy).
5. Central - Not much to say, but they aren't better than any of the other eastern teams.
This is going to be a tight year in both the WDA and EDC. EDC has more talent and I would expect come state tournament time that there will be two east teams in the title game, one east team in the 3rd place game, and one east team in the 5th place game.
Looking forward to watching more soccer this year...