Year-in, year-out, the Trinity League in Southern California is one of the most competitive and deepest high school sports leagues in the country.
This collection of private school powers features nationally ranked teams in just about every sport, including boys and girls soccer.
Consider the following:
The Trinity League boys soccer race was so close that the final round of matches could not determine a league champ. Instead, JSerra, Servite and Mater Dei all tied on points. St. John Bosco, a recent SIMA FAB 50 Top 25 team, had to settled on a fourth-place league finish, despite a stellar season that including winning the AZ Showcase in Arizona. In all, three Trinity League teams crack this week's Top 25 and a fourth team is regionally ranked and a fifth team qualifid for the playoffs. Not too shabby for a six-team league.
On the girls side, JSerra is the reigning SIMA FAB 50 national champion. Although there will not be a repeat, JSerra is one of three Trinity League teams in the SIMA FAB 50, checking in at No. 26. Santa Margarita is ranked No. 16 and Mater Dei at No. 31. Not too shabby for a five-team league.
Now the Trinity League powers will be put to the test.
The CIF Southern Section Division 1 playoffs begin this week, and it's an opportunity for teams to make major moves in the rankings. Also, a lot of questions will be answered, such as:
Can San Clemente boys repeat as section champs?
Can Upland girls extend its perfect season?
Can Los Alamitos girls find that magic spark and make a run to the CIF final for a second straight year?
It all starts Tuesday with play-in matches, but the state, region and nationally ranked teams start play Thursday.
Now, on with the rankings ...
BIG MOVERS: BOYS: Irving (Texas). Irving's move from No. 46 to No. 40 was the largest jump among the ranked teams. ... GIRLS: Flower Mound (Texas). By no means was Flower Mound's three-spot jump to No. 4 the largest among ranking teams, but it was the most significant. Now safely inside the Top 5, Flower Mound is poised for a possible run at No. 1. Last week, Flower Mound defeated a pair of teams ranked in the teens to justify the lofty placement. A sweep of the rematch contests later this season could jump this team even higher in the rankings.
NEWCOMERS: BOYS: No. 21 JSerra (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.), No. 38 Palos Verdes (Palos Verdes Estates, Calif.), No. 41 Godinez (Santa Ana, Calif.), No. 43 Tompkins (Katy, Texas), No. 46 Niceville (Fla.) and No. 49 Watsonville (Calif). ... GIRLS: No. 46 Plant (Tampa, Fla.), No. 47 San Antonio Madison (San Antonio, Texas), No. 48 Carondelet (Concord, Calif.), No. 49 Houston Memorial (Hedwig Village, Texas) and No. 50 West Lauderdale (Collinsville, Miss.).
CLICK BELOW FOR THE COMPLETE WINTER HIGH SCHOOL REGION AND STATE RANKINGS