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State girls’ soccer tournament: Favorites, sleepers, players to watch, Divisions 1-5

Amanda Peck and top-seeded Bishop Feehan have been on the move all season, with just one blemish, a tie against NDA-Hingham.Barry Chin/Globe Staff

A regular season marked by parity comes to a close and brings the most exciting time of the year, the tournament, with 206 teams across five divisions vying for state titles. Preliminary action kicks off Thursday and will run through the state final scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 18.


Favorite: No. 2 Bishop Feehan

Sleeper: No. 6 Franklin

Best first-round match: No. 20 Marshfield at No. 13 Newton North.

Longest road trip: No. 18 Central Catholic at No. 15 Shrewsbury (48.3 miles).

Players to watch: Georgie Clark (senior, Hopkinton), Heidi Lawrence (senior, King Philip), Anna Leschly (junior, Brookline), Amanda Peck (junior, Bishop Feehan), Nicole Proia (sophomore, Natick), Anya Zub (senior, Franklin).


Overview: No. 1 Natick, No. 2 Bishop Feehan, and No. 3 Hopkinton have put together impressive runs to lock down the top three spots. None of the top three surrendered double digits goals against this season. In addition to Natick, the Bay State Conference remains well represented at the top, with Wellesley and Brookline occupying the fourth and fifth spots. Hockomock League powers Franklin and King Philip will pose matchup problems for any foe. Senior goaltender Reagan Murphy, the defensive leader for No. 8 Winchester, can steal a game. Senior Caroline Coletti (22 goals, 7 assists) has scored the most goals in a season for ninth-seeded Concord-Carlisle since 2012 All-American Andrea O’Brien (37). No. 23 Durfee (13-3-2) won the Southeast Conference for the first time.


Favorite: No. 1 Masconomet

Sleepers: No. 10 Oliver Ames

Best first-round match: No. 20 Scituate at No. 13 Milton.

Longest drive: No. 24 Bishop Stang at No. 9 Minnechaug (119 miles).

Players to watch: Sydney Comeau (senior, NDA Hingham), Taylor deVos (junior, Oliver Ames), Josie Lee (senior, Duxbury), Makenna Marshall (senior, Whitman-Hanson), Claire Murray (senior, Hingham), Kara Santos (senior, Mansfield).


Overview: In a clash of defending state champions, No. 25 Silver Lake travels to its Patriot League rival, No. 8 Hingham. The Harbormen dropped to D2 with MIAA realignment after winning the Division 1 title last fall. Silver Lake won Division 2. Up front, top-seeded Masconomet has senior Lauren Boughner and juniors Kayla Scannell and Amanda Schneider, all with 20-plus points. Masconomet recorded its second straight unbeaten regular season, and four times in seven years under Alison Lecasse. With senior Holy Cross commit Sydney Comeau up top, No. 4 Notre Dame (Hingham) has outscored opponents, 63-14, and was the one team that Bishop Feehan did not beat (a 1-1 draw on Sept. 21). Sophomore Sophia McElligott leads an upstart seventh-seeded Melrose team that’s looking to capitalize on its momentum. No. 10 Oliver Ames, which advanced to the final last season, is finally healthy and paced by technical attacker, senior Lucinda Li Cotter.


Favorite: No. 3 Hanover

Sleeper: No. 9 Danvers

Longest road trip: No. 42 Holyoke at No. 23 Sandwich, 144 miles

Best first-round match: No. 17 North Reading at No. 16 Saugus

Players to watch: Sasha Ceol (senior, Dover-Sherborn), Bridget Deignan (senior, Medfield), Sophia Foley (senior, Hanover), Emma Pero (senior, Cardinal Spellman), Belle Pettit (senior, Norwell), Georgia Prouty (junior, Danvers)

Overview: The Division 3 field has talent at the top of the bracket, and depth througout. No. 1 Medfield, No. 2 Dover-Sherborn, No. 3 Hanover, and No. 4 Norwell all possess quality wins and skilled players all over the field. Hanover, the reigning champion, returns most of the core that lifted the trophy last season and has been spurred on by senior UMass commit Sophia Foley and dynamic junior midfielder Sophie Schiller. No. 16 Saugus can score at will (71 goals), courtesy of the connection of junior Madison Botta, senior Madi Femino, and sophomores Shay and Shawn Sewell. No. 20 Nauset boasts a pair of Division 1 commits in senior Olivia Avellar (Boston University) and Caroline Kennard (Ball State). Junior Alexis Greenblottleads a No. 22 Newburyport squad that jockeyed for position at the top of the Cape Ann League.



Favorite: No. 3 Cohasset

Sleepers: No. 5 Hamilton-Wenham

Longest drive: No. 34 Clinton at No. 31 Nantucket (136 miles).

Best first-round match: No. 17 Manchester Essex at No. 16 Monomoy

Players to watch: Tess Barrett (senior, Cohasset), Bella Carroll (junior, Lynnfield), Emilee Dunham (junior, Rockland), Lily Mark (senior, Hamilton-Wenham), Lauren Marjanski (senior, South Hadley), Kathleen Murphy (junior, Blue Hills).

Overview: No. 5 Cohasset takes aim at defending its title behind Maryland commit Tess Barrett, a junior who broke her own single-season scoring record (59 points). With 100 career goals, senior Lauren Marjanski spearheads with attack for top-seeded South Hadley. Cape Ann League foes No. 4 Lynnfield and No. 5 Hamilton-Wenham could be on a collision course after the Generals won their lone meeting, 2-0 on Sept. 19. The Generals have only surrendered four goals all season, outscoring opponents by 46 goals. Junior Kathleen Murphy has electrified the attack for No. 28 Blue Hills (16-0-2). No. 15 Abington boasts a balanced attack that competes in a strong South Shore League which features senior Ella Williamson, sophomore Ava Williamson, and senior Avery McCann, among others.



Favorite: No. 3 Hull

Sleeper: No. 8 St. John Paul II

Longest drive: No. 36 Rising Tide Charter at No. 29 Mt. Everett, 175 miles

Best first-round match: No. 33 Upper Cape at No. 32 Franklin County Tech

Players to watch: Kendall Bodak (senior, Monson), Ella Cheney (senior, St. John Paul II), Raegan Dillon (sophomore, St. John Paul II), Reilly Hickey (senior, Mystic Valley), Fallon Ryan (junior, Hull), Elly Thomas (junior, Hull).

Overview: With Sutton moving up to Division 4, D5 is guaranteed of a new champion. No. 2 Monson, led by senior Clemson-bound Kendall Bodak, who played with the USA U-17 team in England last spring, has all the tools to make a long run. No. 3 Hull can keep up offensively with any team, evidenced by 77 goals this season. Junior Elly Thomas (36 points), junior Fallon Ryan (28 points), senior Veronica Fleming (29 points), and senior Sarah Duran (19 points) can all find the back of the net. The Pirates own a 13-game unbeaten streak. No. 8 St. John Paul II, winners of the Cape & Islands Lighthouse Division the last three seasons, have netted an eye-popping 92 goals. Senior Ella Cheney surpassed 200 career points and eighth-grader Addison Cheney, Ella’s sister, can take on defenders with the ball at her feet. Sophomore Raegan Dillon enters the tournament as one of the most potent finishers in the field.


Cam Kerry can be reached at