After shocking American Heritage (Plantation) on the road this past weekend with a score of 3-0, the Key West High School boys’ soccer program has jumped in the top ten in the Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) Class 2A State rankings. According to MaxPreps, America’s source for high school sports, the Conchs are now 8th in the Class 2A rankings, 76th statewide, and 213th in the nation.
“Our boys have worked hard and I think they deserve the recognition,” said Key West head coach Marc Pierre.
Key West, led by Pierre, a former player in his 3rd year as head coach, is (9-3) on the season coming off of their biggest win of the year so far. This past Friday the Conchs traveled up north to battle the American Heritage Patriots. Similar to the Gulliver Prep matchup, many players weren’t expecting much heading into the game. However, reality turned out different than their pregame thoughts. The boys took care business and defeated the Patriots with a 3-0 victory.
Heritage (13-2-1) were previously ranked in the top ten in the 3A Class rankings, 48th statewide and 121st in the nation. After the loss against Key West, the Patriots have fallen out of the 3A rankings to 11th, 69th statewide and 202nd in the nation. Their only other loss comes from Hallandale, another 3A school.
Here are the current FHSAA Class 2A Rankings according to MaxPreps:
|#||School||Overall Record||District Record|
|1||Gulliver Prep (Miami)||6-0-0||5-0-0|
|3||Ransom Everglades (Miami)||11-4-0||5-1-0|
|4||DeSoto County (Arcadia)||13-0-1||5-0-1|
|5||MAST Academy (Key Biscayne)||9-1-3||3-1-2|
|6||West Shore (Melbourne)||13-2-0||7-0-0|
|7||Berkeley Prep (Tampa)||8-3-3||2-0-0|
|8||Key West High School||9-3-0||4-2-0|
|9||The Villages Charter (The Villages)||11-0-1||10-0-1|
|10||Benjamin (Palm Beach Gardens)||4-0-5||3-0-1|
What is important to note is that both Key West and Gulliver Prep are in the same district, District 16. The Conchs are still the only team to score on the Raiders so far this season. The two teams played each other on December 10th and although Key West had an early 1-0 lead, the Raiders survived a close 4-2 win. Gulliver Prep, defending Class 2A State Champions, does not play again until January 6th when they travel to Coral Reef High School.
As for the Conchs, they travel back up to the mainland to play in the Hickory Point Invitational in Tavares, FL, located right outside Orlando. The Invitational, Florida’s largest high school soccer tournament, celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. 15 teams, including Key West, will play each other in the tourney in hopes of returning home with a title.
“The whole tournament is going to be difficult, but I want us to get far. I’m confident we can compete with all the teams there,” said head coach Marc Pierre.
Key West is set to play the Harmony Longhorns in the first round. The Longhorns, ranked 18th in the Class 5A and 55th statewide, are currently (8-1-4) on the season. They suffered their first and only loss on December 18th to Osceola High School, 3-0. Osceola will also be participating in the Hickory Point Invitational.
The tournament, December 28th through the 30th, showcases some of the best soccer programs in the state, which now includes Key West.
“I want these boys to be exposed to an even higher level of play and get recognized by college coaches. I also want to put our school’s name out there,” said Pierre.