Each week during the remaining high school winter season, ESPNHS highlights five Friday, Saturday or Sunday matches that have a compelling storyline or could have significant state, region and/or national implications.
This weekend remains slow since Texas public schools do not start play until next week and Florida programs are still trickling back from winter break. Therefore, we have a combine boys-girls list of matches to watch. Next week, each gender will have its own Weekend Watch.
Friday, Jan. 6
No. 11 San Pasqual (Escondido, Calif.) vs. No. 46 Torrey Pines (San Diego, Calif.): Torrey Pines was a preseason favorite in San Diego, but a season-opening loss changed that projection. Torrey Pines ran off an 11-match undefeated streak that earned the team a POWERADE FAB 50 ranking, but that will be compromised due to a loss earlier this week. Meanwhile, San Pasqual is perfect through 11 matches to earn the highest ranking among San Diego programs.
Saturday, Jan. 7
No. 5 Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.) vs. Pines Charter (Pembroke, Fla.): Montverde's national title hopes rest on a strong finish, which could include matches against a pair of national top 20 programs in the next week. Kicking things off, however, will be a Friday clash with Pine Charter, which is 9-3-1. Two of the Jaguars' losses are to current POWERADE FAB 50 No. 3 Cypress Bay and state-ranked American Heritage (Plantation, Fla.). Montverde and American Heritage tied early in the season. Montverde, riding a 45-match undefeated streak hobbles into the match as two of its five NCAA Division I-committed players are out for the season due to injury.
Saturday, Jan. 7
No. 7 Aliso Niguel (Aliso Viejo) vs. Sunny Hills (Fullerton, Calif.): This could be the coming out party for Sunny Hills. The team enters the match unranked, despite a 17-0 record. How Sunny Hills fares with Aliso, a perennial CIF Southern Section Division I challenger, will determine if the Fullerton school warrants a national ranking, as well.
No. 11 Corona del Mar (Newport Beach, Calif.) vs. Northwood (Irvine, Calif.): This meeting pits the only teams that remain undefeated in the Pacific Coast League. Corona del Mar needs a victory to remain among the nation's elite teams. Interestingly, Corona del Mar's only loss is to Westview (San Diego, Calif.), which just lost to undefeated La Coasta Canyon (Carlsbad, Calif.) this week. That series of results will influence next week's top 10 rankings.
No. 19 Rosary (Fullerton, Calif.) vs. Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.): This is a meeting of past and present in the powerful Trinity League. Rosary, at 7-1-4, is the up-and-coming program in the league and now gets a crack at perennial league favorite Mater Dei, which has struggled to a 5-4-4 record this season.