Our look ahead to the 2015 high school season continues with a look at junior specialists — goalies, faceoff guys and long-stick midfielders.
This isn’t a ranking (players are listed alphabetically), just an opportunity to highlight a handful of guys who distinguished themselves as sophomores and who we expect will make an impact this spring.
Did we miss someone? Let us know in the comments below, or hit us up on Twitter at @MaxLaxLA.
Today: Top junior specialists. Next: Top sophomores — players who excelled as freshmen in 2014.
Philip Thompson, Harvard Westlake: Entering his third year as the Wolverines’ faceoff specialist, Thompson has the ability to ride a hot streak and feed his offense possession after possession. As a sophomore, the 5-foot-11, 180-pound Princeton commit controlled 75 percent of 401 draws, collected 226 ground balls and tallied 24 points. After two varsity seasons, he holds Harvard Westlake’s records for ground balls in a game, a season and even a career.
Shane Sharp, Palos Verdes: Sharp earned first-team All-Bay League honors at close defense as a sophomore after recording 22 ground balls and 12 take-aways. In November, he committed to Lafayette.
Also: Anthony Overton, Culver City (All-Ocean League)
Michael Guido, St. Francis: The Golden Knights allowed only 7.5 goals per game, and Guido had a lot to do with that. He had a .587 save percentage and a 7.235 goals-against average in 17 games. St. Francis will need that kind of performance again this year as it moves into the Mission League, facing the high-scoring offenses from Loyola, Harvard Westlake and Crespi twice a season.
Jason Pawlak, Agoura: The Chargers ranked ninth in the Southern Section — and fifth in the L.A. division — in goals allowed, with 6.18, and they held opponents to three goals or fewer in seven games.
Also: Cole Thompson, Culver City (All-Ocean League).