2013 High School Southern Championships Preview

Posted: May 8, 2013 05:04 PM

More speed. More experience. That's what players and spectators alike will be treated to at the 2013 High School Southern Championships this weekend at the Ramblewood Soccer Complex in Charlotte, N.C. Numerous veterans of last year's tournament are among the 8 girls and 15 open teams that will vie for the right to call themselves regional champions.


Last year's winner in the girls division, YHB, a combination of Virginia's Yorktown and H-B Woodlawn high school players, has officially split into two teams representative of each individual school. However, without enough athletes to field a team for Southerns this year, several Yorktown players will be competing with the H-B Woodlawn girls again. YHB’s 2012 finals opponent, a combination of players from high schools in North Carolina's Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Triangle region, will again field a strong squad.

In the open division, defending champion University School of Nashville from Tennessee will return in 2013 with plenty of veterans. Their opponent in the 2012 title match, Independence High School of Thompson's Station, Tenn., will also again be in the hunt.


In both divisions, there appear to be multiple challengers, but the favorites are such for a reason.

In the girls division:

  • The Triangle Area team has an 18-3 record which includes defeating Paideia in the Paideia Cup tournament earlier this season.
  • H-B Woodlawn's varsity team has a 7-2 record in 2013, but they haven't played a single high school team – all of their competition thus far has been at the collegiate level.

In the open division:

  • University School of Nashville is 19-2, with their only two losses coming to perennial power Paideia High School of Atlanta.
  • Paideia's record is a slightly less impressive 16-7, but the level of competition they play against regularly speaks to their tournament-tested experience.
  • Independence has a 2012-2013 record of 22-9, with a 4-8 record against other teams competing at Southerns.
  • Carolina Friends School of Durham, N.C., sports an unmatched 20-0 record so far this season.
  • Chapel Hill High School comes into the tournament with a 13-5 record – 4-0 against the Virginia teams travelling to Southerns this year.
  • East Chapel Hill had an 11-5 record at the time of this article.
  • Brookwood High School of Snellville, Ga., has a 13-3 record after having just formed in 2012. They finished seventh at last year's HS Southerns. And given the close scores Paideia posted in a loss to Grady and a victory over Lakeside, there will be no easy victories against anyone from the Atlanta area this weekend.


The Triangle Area team, Saga, has already won three tournaments this year and finished 3-3 at the Commonwealth Cup, a collegiate tournament. "Our biggest strength is our depth," says Coach Josh Hartzog. As a regional team, "We only get to practice together once on the weekends, which means that we do not get as much time as other teams to work together and develop chemistry."

Hartzog calls Klara Calderon-Guthe "the most physically gifted player on the team." She is one of the team’s biggest playmakers, along with Katie Cubrilovic, Audrey Copeland, Ashley Powell, Domenica Sutherland and Magy Llamas. Calderon-Guthe is 5'11" and "can bomb the disc long," and is the lynchpin of their zone defense. Cubrilovic is the fastest player on the team and has the best hands. Copeland is an excellent handler and a "calming presence" on the field.

H-B Woodlawn's only two losses in 2013 came to Georgetown and American Universities. They notched seven wins at Virginia is for Layouts against mostly college B squads. "We are gifted with athleticism and mental toughness," says Coach Laura Perkins. "We know each other well, which goes a long ways."

As for Paideia Groove, their 8-5 record includes a 16th place finish in the 24-team college tournament, Music City Mash-Up. They also won Deep Freeze in February in Chattanooga and finished second at their own Paideia Cup last month. "We have many new players," says Coach Elisabeth Duffy. "While they are quickly improving and contributing, we are still building our depth."


In the open division, University School of Nashville’s Brutal Grassburn comes loaded with seniors who have lots of experience. Three of them, Jack Spiva, Mitchell Lutz and Eli Motycka, played together as sophomores on the open club team Tanasi and helped the team qualify for Club Nationals. "We play wide open on both offense and defense," says Coach Michael Lutz. "We have possibly the most complex set of offenses in youth ultimate. We try to do things that no one else does."

Paideia has had ultimate teams since 1992 which were established as varsity programs in 1998. If "wide open" characterizes University School of Nashville's style of play, then control and discipline might be more appropriate for Paideia. "We aim, as always, to use the entire field as much as we can," says Coach Michael Baccarini. "We take pride in our use of the width of the field as much as the length." The leaders on the field are captains and juniors, Anders Olsen and Nathan Haskell, along with senior John Stubbs, who was recently named to the U.S. U-23 Worlds Open squad that will compete in Toronto in July.

Independence (Flight) may have only a 4-8 record against the other teams they will see at Southerns, but all eight of those losses were either to University School of Nashville or Paideia. And they have beaten Nashville once, along with Brookwood, Grady and McCallie. "Our bread and butter are our starting handlers," says Assistant Coach Eric Williams. "Mac McClellan (captain), Carter Rae and Chase Hammond are our junior handlers and among the best in the state." In fact, Independence only has three seniors on the entire team.

The real wildcard of the open bracket will be the Fighting Quakers of Carolina Friends School who are undefeated this season and have wins (some lopsided) over Grady, Chapel Hill High School, Lakeside, Yorktown, H-B Woodlawn and East Chapel Hill. They have not, however, played University School of Nashville, Paideia or Independence. "We have a lot of depth, height and experience on this team," says Coach Rim Vilgalys. Our "biggest challenge will be maintaining our focus and avoiding complacency. We have not been in too many close games this year, so if we end up in one of those, it could be a real test."

The team is led by captains Calvin Trisolini and 6'4" Crispin Whittier, along with dynamic junior handlers Sol Yanuck and Abe Eichner.


H-B Woodlawn

  • Allison Hahn can run down anything on defense or offense.
  • Anna Toth has great hucks.
  • Hannah Hauptman is the leading scorer, but watch out for rookie speed demon Maddy Boyle.

East Chapel Hill

  • Main handler Radu Mitran – great throws and smart on the field.
  • Cory Oskardmay – very fast and plays incredible defense.
  • Jake Rovner – extremely athletic and will make some of the best bids you will see at this level.

H-B Woodlawn JV

  • Melissa Joskow has a knack for chalking up run-through Ds.
  • Amanda Hayes is always open on first cuts while Arianna Hume has the deep cut.

Woodside Wolverines

  • Chase Snead and Trent Cooper are two of the best defenders in high school ultimate.

Triangle Area Saga

  • Looking for layouts on D or O? Then Ashley Powell is your player, though she is currently recovering from a shoulder injury.
  • Magy Llamas is a tall cutter who makes catches in the end zone and is the center of Saga's zone defense.

Brookwood Inferno

  • Senior Mike McGinnis with the disc.
  • Defender and cutter Sam Batson will guard the opponent's best player.

Paideia Groove

  • The three captains, Anna Clauson, Leah Kessler and Rachel Kramer, along with Carly Ng form the playmaking heart of the team.

Chapel Hill High School CHUF

  • Norman Archer, Tanner Gardner, Alex Grosskurth, Kevin Mateer and Mikko Rich-Voorhees are known as the CHUF 5. Nuff said.

H-B Woodlawn

  • Grayson Sanner will do whatever it takes to get the D.
  • Zach Norrbom has incredible field sense.
  • Nick Som can get open all day and Andy Bogorad has been known to throw a huck or two.


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