Liberty North (Mo.) didn’t make history when it won a district championship last week. But the reward for that achievement was historic: The Eagles will make their first state quarterfinal appearance on Saturday.
It’s been a magical season for the 20-0 Kansas City-area team. At the end of the regular season, the Eagles had won 17 games, a feat they hadn’t achieved in an entire season since 2017.
Juniors Megan Hinnenkamp, a Florida commit, and Ekaterina Theoharidis power the offense, and the defense has given up just 11 goals all season and hasn’t conceded since May 3.
Liberty North cruised through the district tournament, outscoring its opponents a combined 16-0. The Eagles now look to ride that momentum and achieve some more firsts in the state tournament.
Thanks to their postseason dominance, the Eagles have risen four spots to No. 3 in the latest JWS high school soccer rankings.
(Note that these rankings do not include teams from Georgia, Alabama and North Carolina.)
1. South County (Va.), 16-0-1
The Stallions have scored two or more goals in all but three of their games this season while posting seven shutouts.
2. Grandview (Colo.), 16-1-2
Naomi Clark capped a stellar postseason with a hat trick in the state final, propelling the Wolves past defending 5A champion Broomfield, 3-1. Days earlier, Clark scored the game-winning goal in overtime to knock off then-No. 1 Valor Christian in the state semifinals. The title is Grandview’s fifth since 2015.
3. Liberty North (Mo.), 20-0
With the second district title in program history, the Eagles advanced to the state quarterfinals.
4. Gretna (Neb.), 21-0
The Dragons are still celebrating last week’s Class A state title.
5. Valley (Iowa), 17-0
Anna Van Wyngarden had a goal and an assist as the Tigers opened the postseason with a 7-1 win, bringing her season totals to 17 goals and 15 assists.
6. Saint Thomas Aquinas (Kan.), 15-0-2
In three postseason matches, the Saints have outscored their opponents 26-0.
7. Wando (S.C.), 18-1
Wando won the state championship on May 14 in South Carolina’s highest classification, their first title since 2014 and 11th in program history.
8. Colonial Forge (Va.), 15-1
Three times proved one too many for Colonial Forge, which lost to Massaponax in the district final after winning the first two matchups between the teams. The Eagles’ season is not over, though.
9. Colgan (Va.), 16-1-1
The Patriots have yet to allow a goal in three postseason matches.
10. Fort Zumwalt South (Mo.), 23-1
The Bulldogs have over a week to prepare for their state quarterfinal matchup.
11. James Island (S.C.), 20-1-2
The future is bright for the back-to-back state champions. Sophomore Alexis Spivey scored two goals in James Island’s 5-0 state championship rout on May 14.
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12. Triad (Ill.), 21-1
The Knights haven’t allowed a goal since April 28.
13. O’Fallon (Ill.), 20-1
More than half of O’Fallon’s 102 goals have been scored by two players: Western Kentucky commit Avery Christopher (39 goals) and sophomore Becca Koenig (23 goals).
14. Hudsonville (Mich.), 15-0-2
Hudsonville has posted three consecutive shutout victories.
15. Lyons Township (Ill.), 20-1
In three playoff games, the Lions have outscored their opponents 14-0.
16. Valor Christian (Colo.), 16-1
The Eagles’ season ended with a 1-0 double-overtime loss to Grandview in the state semifinals.
17. Broomfield (Colo.), 16-3
The No. 1 team in the inaugural JWS rankings, Broomfield lost two of its final three regular-season games before rebounding to advance to the state championship game, falling just short in its quest for back-to-back 5A titles.
18. Northfield (Colo.), 19-0-1
Freshman goalkeeper Chloe Rhodes saved the decisive fifth penalty kick in a shootout as Class 4A Northfield won its first state championship, completing an undefeated season in the process.
19. Nerinx Hall (Mo.), 19-1-2
Consecutive 2-1 overtime victories catapulted the Markers to a district championship and a state quarterfinal appearance.
20. Metea Valley (Ill.), 18-2-1
The Mustangs won a second straight regional title Friday and followed that up with a 2-0 win Tuesday.
21. Oregon (Wis.), 17-0-1
The Panthers claimed a conference title with a 1-0 win Tuesday, their 15th shutout in 18 games.
22. Marshall (Mich.), 19-0
Marshall hasn’t lost since June 11, nearly a year ago.
23. Deer Creek (Okla.), 15-2
The Antlers are state champions for the seventh time in school history.
24. Bentonville West (Ark.), 18-6
After consecutive losses in mid-April dropped the Wolverines to 8-6, they reeled off 10 consecutive victories to win a state championship.
25. Kent Denver (Colo.), 18-1
With a goal differential of plus-107, the Sun Devils dominated en route to back-to-back Class 3A state championships. They did not allow a goal in five postseason matches, including a 3-0 victory in the state title game Tuesday.
Phillip Suitts is a contributing writer at Just Women’s Sports. He has worked at a variety of outlets, including The Palm Beach Post and Southeast Missourian, and done a little bit of everything from reporting to editing to running social media accounts. He was born in Atlanta but currently lives in wintry Philadelphia. Follow Phillip on Twitter @PhillipSuitts.