The IMG Academy 150 winter update for girls in the 2017 graduating class is out today, and Ashley Sanchez is the new No. 1. The So Cal Blues forward was the youngest player on the U.S. U20 roster for the Four Nations Cup, and received significant minutes as a sub in each of the three matches.
Players moving up the ranks with this update include two players from the northeast and a forward from Southern California.
FC Stars of Mass forward Gabrielle Brummett and Connecticut FC midfielder Ciara Ostrander had good performances at the New Jersey ECNL event over Memorial Day weekend. Brummett, a Duke commit, scored eight goals in the three matches and earned a spot on TopDrawerSoccer.com’s Best XI list for the event, while Ostrander, a verbal to Yale, netted the game winner against a tough Slammers squad on Saturday, and helped her team to finish the weekend undefeated.
San Diego Surf’s Arlie Jones, a USC commit, is coming into her own as one of the best forwards in the nation. As the second leading scorer for the tenth-ranked team in the Grande Sports Academy TeamRank Top 25, Jones earned a spot at February’s U.S. U18 WNT camp, and is a standout alum of more than one TDS Combine.
New to the 150 this spring are a forward from northern California, an attacking center midfielder from Southern California, and a goalkeeper and a center back from Canada.
As if De Anza Force’s U16s need another strong attacking player to play alongside the likes of Luca Deza, Kayla Fong, and Samantha Tran, but leave it to the top ranked team in the nation to add NorCal NPL leading scorer Mia Root to the roster as a discovery player. Root’s home club is Davis Legacy, but she played with De Anza at the San Diego ECNL Showcase and earned a Best XI nod from TopDrawerSoccer.com. Another San Diego event standout was Real So Cal midfielder Samantha Fisher. Fisher is an attacking midfielder that is difficult to contain and when she’s not scoring, she’s providing her teammates with opportunities.
The two Canadians new to our list have already committed to top Division 1 programs. Goalkeeper Lysianne Proulx is a member of the Canadian women’s U17 national team committed to Syracuse, while athletic center back Kennedy Faulkner, also a member of the Canadian U17s, has given her verbal commitment to UCLA.
Not only has the IMG Top 150 received scrutiny, but the regional lists have been updated as well. Keep checking back this week as we unveil newcomers such as Lamorinda United defender/forward Katharine Larson, Continental FC Delco midfielder Julia Detwiler, Beach FC center back Aaqila McLyn, and many, many more.
As far as how we arrive at the rankings, it’s no simple task.
We keep a national database of players as the starting point for our rankings (if you’re not in it, enter a profile here).
We track an extensive list of selections to national team camps and other honors including USSF Development Academy (Boys), ECNL (Girls), and U.S. Youth Soccer National League event and season awards, plus U.S. Soccer Training Centers, ODP, id2 and other player identification programs.
From there we look at additional signs of top player performance in a club environment, with the help of an extensive network of observers around the country. The priority here is for club, college, national team and other select team coaches on the ground, but especially when we can gain corroborating opinions. The more layers of opinions we can gain accumulate the better, as our role is primarily to aggregate those viewpoints, rather than making our own determination as to a player’s quality.
As a matter of policy, we never share which coaches said what about whom so that coaches will be freer to share their assessments. Another policy is that parents’ opinions about their own children are not considered, but you are welcome to provide feedback about honors and other details that may be of help to us in keeping their profiles up to date as well as our challenge of sifting through thousands of players nationwide. That kind of data can be helpful, but the: “How can you not have rated my kid? He is awesome” communique, while compelling, will be consigned to the virtual trash.
In the end, there’s always some level of subjectivity about players, because after all, how good someone is relative to someone else is largely a matter of opinion, but we do our best to make our rankings as educated an opinion as can be.
The rankings will be updated every quarter. Keeping current rankings for 8 classes of 150 players each is no small task, and it is counterintuitive to think the rankings would change daily or weekly. We will announce each update.
So that’s it. You can see the newest version of the rankings here.