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Friday, October 3, 2014

Midfielders

Time to get buys highlighting a few more players. Today, I'll be looking at some midfielders.

Alex Joneson, Bloomfield Hills - The Black Hawks midfield maestro is very good in tight spaces and the engine that makes them go.  Very technically sound and creative, he's fun to watch and dangerous whenever he gets the ball.

Greg Knox, Oxford - I love watching this kid play. Tons of hustle, he just seems to find the ball. Good defensive midfielder who flies around making plays. And those throw ins are ridiculous.

Connor Rutz, Walled Lake Northern - Great player on a very good team. Rutz is a classic field general with technical ability, vision, and intelligence. Reads the play beautifully and has the skills to take advantage of whatever he sees - and he sees a lot.

Jack Lucci, Stoney Creek - As skilled as anyone on this list. He hustles; he understands the game well. Good technical skills, when he and his teammates are focused and on their game they're in  a class by themselves.

Standings Updated

Standings have been updated again.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Goalkeepers

I know I haven't been doing much with the blog lately. There have been various reasons for it, but a big reason has been time. I've been getting pulled in 3 different directions by various commitments, especially the last couple of weeks and I just haven't had the time to devote to it like I wanted. But I'm going to try and "catch up" a bit this week.

One place to start: get some players notices, so here are some goalkeepers to get us started:

Jacob Cowdrey, Stoney Creek - Cowdrey might be the best keeper in the county. He's tall, athletic and just dominates anything in the air. His stats are good. But the things he does best - snagging crosses and coming off his line to shut down through balls - are things that don't show up in the stats.

Julian Fetterman, Berkley - It seems like Berkley just churns out another good keeper every time they graduate one. Fetterman is the latest in the string and a solid all around performer who does everything pretty well.

Skylar Jeppesen, West Bloomfield - The Lakers have been pretty competitive in the OAA White after moving up a division. Jeppesen is a big reason why. He's a good shots topper but his best attribute might be his vocal leadership in the back. West Bloomfield has some new guys playing in front of him, butJeppesen is good at organizing his defense and making sure guys are in the right place.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Brandi Chastain, "It's Not About the Bra"

This is an older book but a good one and well worth reading. Chastain puts her focus on making the game fun and how to instill good habits and good sportsmanship in players while making sure that they get the most of their abilities (or at least all that they want to get out of their abilities). It's insightful on a number of levels and she isn't afraid to use her own mistakes as examples and learning tools. You can probably get this book dirt cheap on the internet right now. (I got mine on Amazon and paid more for shipping than for the book). It's absolutely worth tracking down.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Standings Update

Standings have been updated to include games played last week.

Weekly Preview 9/29

Well, we're heading down the stretch. A number of teams have a chance to clinch division/league titles this week, so let's get to it:

OAA

Red
Stoney Creek has a tough road game at Clarkston on Tuesday, but a win guarantees them at least a share of the OAA Red title. The Cougars could clinch outright if Adams can't get a road win against Troy Athens to set up a showdown next week.

White
White is a three team race between Seaholm, Lake Orion, and Bloomfield Hills. The Black Hawks really want the division title after not getting it last year. They seemed on course for it, but then Seaholm whacked them Saturday to tighten things up a lot. The big match is obviously Bloomfield Hills heading to Lake Orion on Thursday. But both Seaholm (Wed) and Bloomfield Hills (Tue) have to host a decent West Bloomfield squad first.

Blue
Oxford lead the pack but has to keep winning. A road game at Hazel Park should not be a problem. Harrison who leads the chase pack has a tricky home game against rival Farmington. North Farmington could still be in the mix and travels to Pontiac.

KLAA

North
Walled Lake Northern is 8-0 and has all but sewn up the division. They get two chances - at WL Western on Tuesday and home to Lakeland on Thursday to get one point to claim the outright title.

West
Brighton and Grand Blanc are both 6-1-1 heading into the final week. Brighton has the tougher week hosting Pinckney then traveling to Howell.

Central
Livonia Stevenson leads the division and has a chance to break the Novi/Northville stranglehold on the division. Stevenson travels to Salem on Tuesday before hosting South Lyon East on Thursday. They better win both though.

South
Plymouth is 7-1 and Canton 8-0. The teams meet on Thursday at Plymouth for a chance to settle the division.

MAC

Red
First place Fraser puts their unbeaten record on the line this week, including a tough home game against Eisenhower on Wednesday. Second place Ford will play rival Utica on the same night.

White
Lakeview actually has the best winning percentage right now but sits second due to fewer games played. They've got a chance to make up some ground this week hosting Anchor Bay on Monday then traveling to Grosse Pointe South on Wednesday. First place Dakota has a tough road trip to Romeo on Wednesday.

Blue
Warren Mott(2nd) and L'Anse Creuse(1st) sit atop the division and meet at L'Anse Creuse on Wednesday.

Gold
First place Lamphere (8-0-1) has a chance to put the division title to bed this week when they travel to Roseville on Monday and then host St. Clair on Wednesday.

Silver
Warren Fitzgerald is 5-2 and has an incredibly difficult week. But it's a week that could propel them to the top of the division. They play home and home with New Haven (5-0) on Monday and Thursday. In between they take on Marine City (4-1-1) on Wednesday.

Flint Metro

The Flint Metro is using shootouts in league games this year - a rare thing. It's already starting to make a bit of a mess of the standings. Linden leads with 13 points as they should, but there is a huge chase pack for second place, which Brandon currently leads with 9. Big games this week include the Holly-Fenton rivalry game on Monday, Brandon taking road trips to league newcomer Flushing (Monday) and Kearsley (Wednesday) as they try to reel in Linden. The Eagles travel to Clio on Wednesday.

CHSL

Central
Second place Catholic Central travels to first place De La Salle on Tuesday for a game that could well decide the division winner and seeding for the CHSL playoffs next week.

AA Division
St. Mary's looks to wrap up the division with a win over Father Gabriel Richard on Tuesday.

Tri Sectional
Ditto Cabrini as they take on an improved Frankel Jewish Academy.