When it comes to Classes 6A and 5A soccer in Virginia, Northern Virginia is guaranteed 50 percent of the state tournament field.
Yet, again, they came away with 100 percent of the championships.
In the current playoff format for 6A and 5A programs, two teams from the North (basically Washington, D.C. Metro Area) square off with two teams from the South (basically Richmond and/or Virginia Beach area) in the semifinals. After the Virginia Beach boys teams were wiped out in the 6A South regionals by the Richmond area teams, the Richmond area squads both fell victim to eventual state champion Langley and runner-up Battlefield in the semifinals, setting up an all-North final. The 5A girls featured an all-North final, as well, as Albemarle completed a perfect season with a win over rival Mountain View. The 6A girls and 5A boys featured North teams beating South teams in the final.
Even with Development Academy teams thinning the ranks in Northern Virginia boys soccer and the ECNL girls spread among a number of Northern Virginia schools, the quality of the North teams still trumps the South. The current format has been in place since 2014, and during that time the North has accounted for 25 of the 32 state finalist and all but two champions. Classes 4A, 3A, 2A and 1A play an East-West format.
Langley's boys started the season as No. 1 in the SIMA FAB 50, climbed back to No. 2 last week and will likely finish in that spot when the next SIMA FAB 50 is released Tuesday following a 6-2 win over Battlefield. Yorktown girls stand to move up in the girls rankings, while Albemarle is likely to crack the SIMA FAB 50.
Things to watch for the week:
* Michigan and Wisconsin close out the high school girls season with state finals this weekend. The key team to watch is Forest Hills Central, currently 18-0-4 and favored in Michigan's large-school bracket.
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