WSYL Preview: Blue Division is Loaded with Talent

The World Series of Youth Lacrosse is just over a week away.  Today Andrew Onodera has the first of a five part series previewing this years event taking place July 2nd through the 4th at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park, northeast of Denver, Colorado.

One of the strongest divisions in this year’s World Series of Youth Lacrosse is the Blue Division. Half of the teams in this division are ranked in the Top-10 in the U13 World Rankings. However, even the three clubs that aren’t ranked all have legitimate shots at advancing out of this strong division.

Team From Qualifier Inside Lacrosse U13 World Ranking
SoCal Express U13 National Southern California West Region #2
Expect SoCal Express to be one of the most prepared teams heading into this year’s tournament. SoCal Express Coach Adam Guy says that his team has participated in conditioning sessions with trainers in Calabasas and competed at the Vail Lacrosse Tournament in order to prepare for the altitude. While all this preparation is nice to see, what really sets this team apart from the competition is how well they play team lacrosse. Coach Guy explained that his team’s strength is how his players, “know and trust each other, they play for one another and work hard for one another. They share and move the ball very well and aren’t concerned over who scores or gets the glory, so long as the team is successful.”

Team From Qualifier Inside Lacrosse U13 World Ranking
Legacy Lacrosse Long Island, NY North Region #8
The 2016 World Champions are back and ready to compete for another title. Although this team is much weaker than last year’s squad, they were still able to finish fourth in the talented North Region. The key for Legacy Lacrosse this year will be a strong start. If these kids can get a few big wins early in the tournament and find a way to ride the momentum, they could easily be poised for another deep tournament run.

Team From Qualifier Inside Lacrosse U13 World Ranking
Tri-State 2022 Hightstown, NJ East Region #10
Tri-State Lacrosse had moments of greatness in the East Regional, however they certainly lacked chemistry. Coach Bob Turco said that regionals, “was a team building process. Since we had not competed before as a team we had to discover the right combinations that made us most competitive.” If Tri-State can perfect these combinations come Championship Weekend, they will be a team to watch for. With a defense as strong as theirs, expect lots of close games and late drama from this team.

Team From Qualifier Inside Lacrosse U13 World Ranking
South Jersey Black Storm Medford, New Jersey East Region NR/Named to Watch List
In a field full of prestigious travel teams, it’s somewhat refreshing to see a neighborhood team make it to Denver. Then again, this is not your average neighborhood team. They finished the East Qualifier with an impressive 5-1 record and also went 8-0 against the top teams in the country in the NXT League. Offense is this team’s biggest strength. Coach Don Demato explained that this team “is composed of strong dodgers and good off ball finishers at attack.” Expect the boys from South Jersey to make a huge splash at this year’s tournament.

Team From Qualifier Inside Lacrosse U13 World Ranking
Evolve Elite Canada Ontario, Canada International NR/Named to Watch List
One of the most exciting things about this year’s World Series is the number of international teams competing in the tournament. Evolve Elite is probably the most promising of all these international teams. The roster is filled with guys from the Ontario Province, one of lacrosse’s hotbeds around the globe. While not much else is known about this team, expect them to compete at a very high level.

  Team From Qualifier Inside Lacrosse U13 World Ranking
Michigan Warriors Elite Bloomfield, Michigan Central Region Not Ranked
The Michigan Warriors are back in Denver. Warriors Elite is looking to build off of a great showing from last year’s squad and make deeper run in the tournament. The Warriors are considered to be one of the best clubs in the Midwest and they certainly proved it in the Central Qualifier. Also note that this U13 team took home the 2017 Midwest Premier Lacrosse League championship trophy.



Next Up:  The Red Division (Monday, June 26th)

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