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Kovar, Crook headline ESPNHS Washington Starting 11 soccer squad

For the October issue of the ESPNHS Washington edition, we teamed up with our resident soccer expert Sheldon Shealer to identify the top 22 soccer players in the state. The mags hit schools this week, but if you haven’t received your copy yet, here’s a look at the Starting 11 and an additional 11 elite players starring on the pitch for the upcoming spring season. To get your fill of high school soccer info, check out the ESPNHS soccer homepage.

The Starting 11

[F] Ike Crook, Todd Beamer, Senior, Sounders FC

Son of former Sounders player Billy Crook

[F] Jesse Klug, Overlake, Senior, Sounders FC

Earned Class 1A All-State honors last season

[F] Aaron Kovar, Garfield, Senior, Sounders FC

Could play for the American or Irish national team

[MF] Ian Adams, Shorecrest, Senior, Crossfire Premier

Tallied 10 goals and nine assists to earn All-Wesco first team honors

[MF] Stefan Bangsund, Kentwood, Senior, Sounders FC

Has emerged as one of the area’s top passers

[MF] Kyle Bjornethun, Glacier Peak, Junior, Eastside FC

Offensive creativity makes him a rare talent

[MF] Beau Blanchard, Bellevue, Junior, Eastside FC

Up-and-coming talent will play a big role on offense for Bellevue

[MF] Mikhail Doholis, Union, Senior, Crossfire Premier

College recruiters are lining up for this accomplished scorer

[MF] Austin Sweeney, Todd Beamer, Senior, Sounders FC

Continues line of strong midfielders at Beamer

[D] Michael Gallagher, Eastlake, Senior, Sounders FC

His play at the back makes it nearly impossible to find Eastlake’s net

[GK] Keenan Townsend, Skyview, Senior, Sounders FC

Keeper was GSHL co-Player of the Year

Other Top Players

[F] Nathan Beasley, Camas, Sophomore, Westside Metros

Was a clutch performer during state-title run

[F] Dominique Dismuke, Decatur, Senior, Sounders FC

Booted seven goals and added four assists for the Gators

[F] David Gebert, Everett, Senior, Crossfire Premier

Two-time All-Wesco selection

[F] Alex Shane, Issaquah, Senior, Eastside FC

Opponents fear him for his scoring and well-placed crosses

[F] Peter Sokolis, University, Senior, Eastside FC

Has helped Eastside become a national power

[MF] Troy McCarty, Snohomish, Senior, Crossfire Premier

Spent time training in Italy last spring

[MF] Jim Oganga, Thomas Jefferson, Senior, Crossfire Premier

Native of Kenya posted three multi-goal games in 2011

[D] Jacob Beck, Central Kitsap, Senior, Sounders FC

Physical defender doubles as a wrestling standout

[D] Mark Matula, Eastlake, Junior, Crossfire Premier

Looks to build on last year’s HS debut after playing club ball as a frosh

[D] Jose Ocampo, Redmond, Junior, Crossfire Premier

Has the ability to take away the area’s top offensive threats

[GK] Korey Durkee, Gig Harbor, Senior, Washington Premier

News Tribune Player of the Year is also school’s punter

Note: The Starting 11 is comprised of the best players in Washington who are projected to suit up for their high school teams this year. The Other Top Players are 11 more athletes who will either suit up for their high school team or play club ball exclusively.

David Auguste is an associate editor for ESPNHS and ESPNHIGHSCHOOL.com. Follow him on Twitter @ESPNHSAuguste or email him at David.Auguste@espn.com.