Southern High School Notebook: Strong Starts Highlight Early Season Play

(Photo: St. Edward’s (Fla.) Lacrosse/Twitter)

The high school season is off and running in the South with most teams in Georgia and Florida being a few weeks into their seasons now while play has just gotten further underway in South Carolina, Texas, and Arkansas. The season is on the cusp in Kentucky, North Carolina, and Tennessee with things getting further underway this week.

Each week of the high school season I will publish a weekly article detailing some of the highlights and headlines from the prior. This week’s notebook is coming out on Monday, but I plan releasing it either Tuesday or Wednesday the rest of the season.

So, let’s get after it.

Big Starts in The Sunshine State

The season is about two full weeks in swing down in the Sunshine State, and already there have been some exciting games and results, from Jacksonville to Miami.

St. Edward’s is 5-0 and last week earned their biggest win of the season, knocking off Creekside 14-7. The Pirates offense has been cruising early this season, outscoring their opponents 91-20 through five contests. Senior Oscar Lindenthal, junior Ricky Savage (Loyola), and senior Riker Pratt have been leading the way thus far. The trio combined for 81 points (48 goals) in their first four games alone. Savage had 19 goals as the Pirates’ top goal-scorer through those first four contests.

For the Pirates, their schedule only gets harder from here on out. After facing Benjamin School on Tuesday, they have a seven-game stretch over the next month that includes Pine Crest, Episcopal School Dallas (Texas), IMG Academy, Jupiter, and St. Andrew’s.

Speaking of the Scots, Tony Seaman’s squad still hasn’t lost a game March of 2020. Coming off an undefeated 1A title a year ago, St. Andrew’s is sitting with a 5-0 record and looks to be the most talented team in the class. Junior Jack Schulte (Air Force) leads the way on offense while senior Sean Jordan (Harvard) continues to be as advertised with 21 ground ball, four goals, and five assists through five games. Gunnar Schwarz (Navy) is anchoring that defense as good as anyone, making 35 saves with a 74% save percentage.

The Scots play Jupiter on Tuesday and have a likely challenging stretch in mid-March, facing Dallas Jesuit (Texas) and Boy’s Latin (Md.) within three days. They start that week with a game against Oxbridge.

Newsome, led by senior Luke Haley (Utah) with 32 points off 21 goals and 11 assists, is also off to an undefeated 6-0 start. Pine Crest has also impressed early with a 3-0 start with juniors Jordan Faison (Notre Dame) and Nigel Vital leading the way as huge assets for the Panthers. The Panthers will face Oxbridge (6-0) in what should be an exciting battle on Tuesday.

Lambert, Blessed Trinity Still The Kings of Georgia

In the Peach State, Lambert went 22-1 and won the 6A-7A championship a year ago. Blessed Trinity went 22-0 and won the A-5A state title.

Just a few weeks into the 2022 season and both the Longhorns and Titans still sit atop the Peach State. Lambert is currently 5-0 and coming off two big wins over Roswell (10-7) and Centennial (12-7), which was a title game rematch.

Senior Danny Kesselring has picked up right where he left off a year ago, leading the way for this Longhorns squad thus far. He had four goals against Roswell and two against Centennial.

With faceoff man Wilson Van Buren (Georgetown) helping to headline things, Blessed Trinity is also off to a 5-0 start and is coming off a two wins over teams from the Tar Heel State as the Titans beat Charlotte Catholic (N.C.) 19-7 and Charlotte Country Day (N.C.) 12-6. Senior midfielder Charlie Lohman (Colgate) has also been a big piece of this squad, helping to lead this offense. He had a hat trick in their last game against Charlotte Country Day and also found the back of the net against Charlotte Catholic.

IMG’s Texas Trip

IMG Academy (Fla.), arguably the most notable prep school across the high school sports scene, took a trip to the Lone Star State last week and came out with a 3-1 record on the week, but it was far from a breeze for the Ascenders.

While they beat Southlake Carroll 10-2, Westlake and St. Mark’s kept it close against IMG. Defending Texas state champion Jesuit Dallas also only fell by one (8-7) against the Ascenders. And for Jay Sothoron and the Episcopal Dallas (ESD) Eagles, they came out on top 7-5 in a game that saw Eagles’ goalie Jack Scott is standing on his head to help hold IMG to just one goal in the second half of play. Senior attackman Mac Rodvold had four goals for ESD in their biggest win of the season, which they have started 4-0.

*Note: Please feel free to shoot me and email or message of social media with any stats or other information. Any help is greatly appreciated.*

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