Coach: Manes Preptit (second season, 2-16-1)
Last season: 2-16-1 (lost in first round of district)
Top players: Carter Penegor (sr., Defender); Corbin Elims (sr., D); Michael Carvinhoul (sr., Forward); Sergio Cordero (jr., Midfield); Jose Martinez (sr., M); Jaime Trujillo (jr., M).
Outlook: "I think the strength of our team this year, unlike last year, is probably going to be the camaraderie of the guys," Coach Manes Preptit said. "They've been able to play in the system for two years and they're getting more comfortable together. I think the speed of play is slowly but surely improving, and our wings are probably our biggest strength. We're going to be doing a lot of attacking through the wing players."
Aug. 19—at Woodford Co., 7:15; 23—South Oldham, 5; 26—Mason Co., 6:15; 30—St. Patrick, 1; 30—Perry Co. Central, 5.
Sept. 2—at Harrison Co., 7:30; 4—Sayre, 7; 13—Bardstown, 1:30; 17—Model, 6; 18—Scott Co., 7:30; 23—Lafayette, 7:30; 25—at Lexington Christian, 7:30; 27—at Rowan Co., noon; 30—at Paul Dunbar, 8.
Oct. 2—Berea, 6:30; 6—at Lincoln Co., 8.
Coach: Tim Bernardi (ninth season, 114-49-17)
Last season: 14-6-3 (lost in region finals)
Top players: Thomas Ueland (sr., M); Nick Dishion (sr., D); Collin Rose (jr., M); Zach Wolfe (sr., F); Jevic Bosele (sr., M); Chris Hunt (jr., D); Amie Mabika (jr., D); Braxton Burtin (jr., M); Logan Cox (jr., D).
Outlook: Coach Tim Bernardi says he is excited about the season as the Blue Devils return many of their players from last year's team. Henry Clay "will strive to play good defense, keep possession of the ball and try to generate a goal or two from different places," Bernardi said.
Blue Devils' schedule
Aug. 16—at Madison Central, 6; 22—Ryle, 6; 23—Henderson Co., 8:30 a.m.; 23—Bowling Green, 5; 26—at Lafayette, 8; 28—at Sayre, 5:30.
Sept. 2—Tates Creek, 8; 5—vs. Castle (Ind.), at Evansville, Ind., 8; 6—vs. Lake Central (Ind.), at Evansville (Ind.), 11 a.m.; 6—vs. Hamilton Southeastern (Ind.) at Evansville, Ind., 5; 9—Bryan Station, 8; 11—at North Oldham, 7:30; 18—South Oldham, 8; 23—Scott Co., 8; 25—at Paul Dunbar, 8.
Oct. 2-4—TBA in Gateway Classic at St. Louis; 9—at Lexington Catholic, 8.
Coach: Chris Grimm (seventh season, 53-42-24)
Last season: 8-9-1 (lost in first round of district)
Top players: Tenko Kono (sr., F); Ben Stevens (sr., D); Arlin Mijangos (sr., M); Ian McFarlane (sr., F); Jimmy Kaindu (jr., F); Nick SirLouis (so., M); Holden Treadway (so., M).
Outlook: "We will be a bit inexperienced going into the season with a lot of new varsity players as well as many returning players taking on new roles," Coach Chris Grimm said. "But I have a really hard-working group that shows up to compete every single training session. There will be an adjustment period for some of the new guys, and with so many new pieces it will take some time to figure out a proper system and rotation. However, the potential of this group is high and there is not much drop-off from top to bottom. That kind of depth makes practices a lot of fun and it will really bring out the best of the guys as they compete for roles within the team."
Aug. 18—at Shelby Co., 7:30; 20—Bardstown, 8; 22—vs. Boone Co., 6; 23—vs. South Oldham, 10:30 a.m.; 23—vs. Ryle, 7; 26—Henry Clay, 8; 30—Newport Central Catholic, 9:30 a.m.; 30—TBA.
Sept. 2—at Woodford Co., 7:30; 4—Lexington Christian, 8; 11—at Tates Creek, 8; 16—Lexington Catholic, 8; 18—at Paul Dunbar, 8; 23—at Bryan Station, 7:30; 25—at Mercer Co., 7:30; 27—at Grove City (Ohio), 1; 30—West Jessamine, 8.
Oct. 2—at Madison Central, 8; 7—East Jessamine, 8; 9—at Western Hills, 7:30.
Coach: Jonathan Kincheloe (third season, 19-17-6)
Last season: 9-10-2 (lost in district semifinals)
Top players: Thomas Hayes (sr. F); Zach Yohon (sr., M); Chase Tranter (sr., D); Daniel Stuber (jr. D).
Outlook: The Knights recently returned from a 10-day trip to Europe, where they competed against two high-level club teams and received training from top staff in Holland. "We are optimistic about this season," Coach Jonathan Kincheloe said. "We had a great start to last year's season, but then fell off toward the end and were unable to capitalize on our opportunities. We look to make adjustments this season and focus on a stronger defense, and with 11 seniors we should have the leadership needed to compete well in the city. We are very young and inexperienced in some spots, but hopefully with a mix of the young and the old we will be able to create a winning combination."
Aug. 19—at Trinity, 7; 25—at Covington Catholic, 7; 28—East Jessamine, 7:30.
Sept. 2—at Boyle Co., 8; 4—at St. Henry, 7:30; 6—at Manual, 11 a.m.; 9—Lexington Christian, 7:30; 11—Paul Dunbar, 7:30; 13—at Mercer Co., 7:30; 16—at Lafayette, 8; 18—at Harrison Co., 7:30; 20—Oldham Co., 1; 23—at Madison Central, 8; 25—at West Jessamine, 8; 27—Clark Co., 7:30; 30—Tates Creek, 8.
Oct. 2—at Woodford Co., 7:30; 4—Boone Co., 7; 7—at Scott Co., 7:30; 9—Henry Clay, 8.
Coach: Danny Harvey (fourth season, 23-30-4)
Last season: 11-7-2 (lost in district semifinals)
Top players: Jordan Tackett (sr., M); Drew Graybeal (sr., D); Hunter Mitchell (sr., M).
Outlook: "As always, I am optimistic about the season," Coach Danny Harvey said. "We have a great group of players who can accomplish a lot on the field. The depth of our team is always our biggest challenge, but that's the nature of a school our size. If we play to our potential, I think we can compete with every team on our schedule."
Aug. 18—Paris, 7:30; 19—Berea, 6; 21—All "A" region finals, TBD; 26—at Mercer Co., 7:30; 28—Madison Central, 7:30.
Sept. 4—at Lafayette, 8; 6—at Bourbon Co., TBD; 9—at Lexington Catholic, 7:30; 13—at Ryle, 4; 16—Dunbar, 7:30; 23—at Tates Creek, 8; 25—Bryan Station, 7:30; 30—at Danville, 7:30.
Oct. 2—at Corbin, TBD; 4—Louisville Christian, 12:30; 7—Lincoln Co., 7:30; 9—Franklin Co., 7:30.
Coach: Todd Bretz (25th season, 402-141-29)
Last season: 29-1-2 (state champion)
Top players: Tyler Joy-Brandon (sr., M); Luke Norris (sr., M); Bryce Faulkner (sr., M); Alex Lewis (sr. D).
Outlook: The defending state champions lost plenty to graduation, but don't discount the Bulldogs. "This year will be a rebuilding year for us," Coach Todd Bretz said. "We graduated two great senior classes the last two years and we will have a difficult time replacing their experience. We will rely heavily on our returning players, and our younger players will have to grow quickly for us to compete."
Aug. 19—Montgomery Co., 8; 22—vs. Bowling Green at Lafayette, 8; 23—Ryle, 10 a.m.; 23—Henderson Co., 5; 28—Ballard, 8.
Sept. 2—West Jessamine, 8; 5—Jasper (Ind.) at Evansville, Ind., 8; 6—Hamilton Southeastern (Ind.) at Evansville, Ind., 11 a.m.; 6—at Evansville Memorial (Ind.), 7; 9—at Tates Creek, 8; 11—at Lexington Catholic, 7:30; 16—at Lexington Christian, 7:30; 18—Lafayette, 8; 23—at Woodford Co., 7:30; 25—Henry Clay, 8; 30—Bryan Station, 8.
Oct. 3—TBA at St. Louis; 4—TBA at St. Louis; 7—St. Henry, 8; 9—at South Oldham, 7:30.
Coach: Joe Porter (seventh season, 42-52-6)
Last season: 10-6 (lost in first round of district)
Top players: Sebastian Calmes (sr., D); Will Newton (so., M); Willy Martin (jr., M); Robert Dean (jr., D); Zach Jones (jr., D).
Outlook: "This is a young but really enthusiastic group," Coach Joe Porter said. "Our defense gained a lot of experience last year, which will be important after losing a couple of great playmakers on offense. They all work hard and work for each other, which is great to see so early. There are always growing pains with a young team, but this group is up to the challenge."
Aug. 19—vs. Frankfort at Lexington Christian, 8; 21—All "A" region finals at Lexington Christian, TBD; 26—Tates Creek, 5:30; 28—Henry Clay, 5:30.
Sept. 2—St. Francis, 6; 4—at Bryan Station, 7; 16—Bethlehem, 6; 20—Lincoln Co., TBD; 23—at TBA; 25—at Scott Co., 6:30; 30—Bourbon Co., 5:30.
Oct. 2—at Paris, 5:30; 4—Model, 1; 7—at Clark Co., 7:30; 9—at Harrison Co., TBD.
Coach: Albert Gross (first season)
Last season: 10-6-1 (lost in first round of region)
Top players: Edwin Garcia (sr., F); Cubaka Mutayongwa (jr., M); Adolphe Mutayongwa (sr., M); Jared Wilkens (sr., F).
Outlook: "I feel that we can develop a very competitive team by the end of the year," said Coach Albert Gross, who was at Clark County last season. "We will go through various peaks and valleys during the season, but our ultimate focus is having the team playing our best come October. We are trying to incorporate new ideas and systems of play for our players, which can be a lengthy process, but they have trained well over the pre-season and shown a strong level of commitment."
Aug. 22—vs. South Oldham at Bryan Station, 6; 23—vs. Bowling Green at Bryan Station, 10:30 a.m.; 26—at Sayre, 5:30; 30—Scott Co., 8.
Sept. 2—Henry Clay, 8; 9—Dunbar, 8; 11—Lafayette, 8; 18—at Madison Central, 6; 20—vs. Newport Central Catholic at Madison Central, noon; 20—vs. Woodford Co. at Madison Central, 6; 23—Lexington Christian, 8; 27—vs. Graves Co. at Marshall Co., noon; 27—at Marshall Co., 7:30; 30—at Lexington Catholic, 7:30.
Oct. 2—Male, 7:30; 9—Bryan Station, 8.
Mark Maloney: (859) 231-3229. Twitter: @MarkMaloneyHL. Blog: markmaloney.bloginky.com.