CHSAA’s 2018 4A Girls Soccer Preseason Top Ten Rankings included four Jeffco League teams: D’Evelyn (1), Evergreen (3), Wheat Ridge (4), and Valor (7). Three of these four teams reached the Final Four in 2017, with D’Evelyn eliminating Wheat Ridge before being crowned 2017 State Champions in a 1-0 victory over Evergreen. Additionally, Littleton and Standley Lake reached the Sweet Sixteen, and Green Mountain rounded out the impressive seven 4A Jeffco League teams to earn spots in the 2017 4A State Championship field. So what does a team do the next year to prepare for such a powerhouse league schedule? They start off the season by taking on five 5A opponents in ten days, including CHSAA’s preseason 5A top pick and 2017 5A State Finalist, the Arapahoe Warriors.
After jumping out to a 2-0 start to the season with strong victories over Chaparral and Pomona, Littleton quickly cracked the top 10 in The Denver Post’s 4A Girls Soccer rankings. Next, Littleton headed into the Warrior Invitational as the sole 4A contender. After an exciting 3-2 victory over Ralston Valley, Littleton drew perennial powerhouse and fellow LPS school, Arapahoe, in the second round. The Lions showcased their excellent chemistry and team play to work together from start to finish for a 4-2 victory in a game that included a lightning delay followed by extreme wind and rain for much of the second half. Neither players nor loyal fans were deterred by the elements, finishing strong in likely one of the program’s most impactful games in school history.
Next, the Lions suffered a tough 2-1 loss to ThunderRidge (#4 in 5A, The Denver Post, 3/16/18) in the final of the tournament, but the Lions expect to show their fire again in a non-league match up with Air Academy on Tuesday and when they begin league play on April 3rd. In their first five games, the Lions have netted 15 goals (by five different players), combined for nine assists (also by five different players), and boasted excellent performances across the board by their goalkeeper, defense, and offense. Go Lions!