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Yushin Gossin, Lincoln Southeast

Lincoln Southeast midfielder Yushin Gossin (11) takes a header over Lincoln North Star forward Jonathan Velasquez last season.

CLASS A BOYS

Team (’18 record); Pvs.

1. Kearney (18-2); 1

2. Creighton Prep (16-4); 5

3. Omaha South (19-2); 3

4. Omaha Westside (18-2); 2

5. Lincoln Southwest (16-2); 4

6. Grand Island (13-5); 6

7. Gretna (15-4); 3/B

8. Elkhorn South (14-7); 2/B

9. Omaha Central (8-9); -

10. Papillion-LV South (9-8); -

Contenders: Lincoln East, Lincoln North Star, Millard South, Millard West.

Case for No. 1: Kearney was the state champion last year — the first one ever in Class A not from Omaha or Lincoln — and starts this year at No. 1. The Bearcats bring back six starters, including their top three goal scorers and a four-year starter at goalie (Jacob Hardy). Creighton Prep has back Duncan McGuire, who led the state with 21 goals. Omaha South and Lincoln Southwest each have to replace 12 seniors. It will be interesting to see how Gretna and Elkhorn South do after moving up from Class B, where they have consistently been good teams.

CLASS B BOYS

Team (’18 record); Pvs.

1. South Sioux City (17-5); 1

2. Omaha Skutt (15-5); 4

3. Schuyler (15-2); 6

4. Elkhorn (14-4); 5

5. Omaha Gross (12-6); 8

6. North Platte (11-5); 8/A

7. Crete (14-3); 7

8. Lexington (11-5); 9

9. Norris (10-7); 10

10. Lincoln Pius X (8-8); -

Contenders: Columbus, Mount Michael, Waverly.

Case for No. 1: South Sioux City won the state championship last season with a 2-0 win against Elkhorn South in the state final, and returns a lot of its team. And the teams that finished second and third in the final ratings, Elkhorn South and Gretna, have moved up to Class A. Elkhorn looks like a pretty talented team. Crete made state for the first time last season and should have another good team.

CLASS A GIRLS

Team (’18 record); Pvs.

1. Millard West (11-6); 4

2. Omaha Marian (18-3); 2

3. Omaha Westside (12-4); 5

4. Millard North (17-3); 1

5. Lincoln Southwest (13-5); 3

6. Gretna (14-4); 4/B

7. Lincoln Southeast (15-2); 6

8. Millard South (12-6); 9

9. Papillion-La Vista (11-5); 7

10. Lincoln East (10-6); -

Contenders: Lincoln Pius X, Papillion-La Vista South.

Case for No. 1: This will be an interesting class to watch this year, with several of the top programs affected by players deciding to not play high school soccer and instead play for an Omaha club team. Will it still be the same teams that make the state tournament and reach the state final, or does this open the door for some new teams? Millard West brings back a lot of its top attackers from a state runner-up team and starts No. 1. Millard North was the state champion last year, but graduated four seniors and lost five players to the club team.

CLASS B GIRLS

Team (’18 record); Pvs.

1. Elkhorn South (17-3); 3

2. Omaha Skutt (16-3); 2

3. Elkhorn (16-3); 1

4. North Platte (12-4); 8/A

5. Omaha Mercy (12-7); 5

6. Omaha Roncalli (13-4); 7

7. Columbus (11-4); 6

8. Columbus Scotus (9-4); 8

9. Hastings (11-7); 9

10. Waverly (13-4); 10

Case for No. 1: Elkhorn South brings back several of its top goal scorers and its goalie from a state semifinal team and starts the year at No. 1. Elkhorn South junior forward Mo Gohr, a Kansas State commit, scored 20 goals and had 11 assists last season. Elkhorn beat Omaha Skutt 2-0 in the state championship match last season. But Elkhorn won’t have state player of the year Skylar Heinrich, who had 31 goals and 14 assists last season. She graduated from high school early and joined the Creighton soccer team.

Reach the writer at 402-473-7435 or bwagner@journalstar.com. On Twitter @LJSSportsWagner.

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Sports reporter

Brent has worked at the Journal Star for 14 years. His beats include Nebraska volleyball, women's basketball and high school soccer and cross country.

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