So who's No. 1 & predictions for Tuesday (9/16)

Take a look on PDPreps for the first rankings of the high school season.

I’m Bill Pinella and I approve those rankings!

Oh, I’m certain the questions will start: where do they come from, how do you determine ranked teams; how many coaches, players, fans do you consult with; how many games have you seen this year…

The truthful answer – the rankings come from just about where you would expect: out of thin air. Just like the predictions you see here everyday…but those are pretty accurate. You could look it up.

Predicting a soccer result isn’t all that easy, especially if you don’t go for the standard 1-nil final. But look at Monday’s call on the Petaluma/Healdsburg women’s contest. Not too shabby, right?

But we digress.

Today is all about rankings. Making rankings isn’t all that easy either. The top teams are usually obvious, but after that… well, on any given Tuesday…

Can Maria Carrillo’s men’s team and Casa Grande’s women’s team go wire-to-wire? Is there truly a changing of the guard and can the Sonoma County League dominant the rankings? Will there be a surprise team this season?

In the grand scheme of things, what do they mean? Absolutely nothing to the NCS or the NBL or the SCL or the NCL. But they are a source of conversation and if we can get the soccer community involved at any level then that’s a positive thing.

Face it, you’re reading this blog because you love the sport and the kids who play it. Our hope is that in time we’ll be able to expand this to include all the small schools, all men’s and women’s teams on the North Coast and have rankings for large and small schools. It’ll happen.

Already Sonoma Academy is scheduling and playing large schools. No reason not to in the preseason. Everyone gains from those efforts.

The other positive about this time of year on the soccer calendar is that we put aside the squabbles of club soccer and enjoy the game and the kids who play it. And that’s a huge plus.

Enjoy the rankings.

Enjoy the season.

And support all the kids who are out there playing for their school.

Today’s predictions:

Men’s Games

PREDICTION: (at) Elsie Allen 3, Cardinal Newman 2
FINAL: Elsie Allen 1, Cardinal Newman 1 (OT)

PREDICTION: (at) Maria Carrillo 4, Santa Rosa 0
FINAL: Maria Carrillo 6, Santa Rosa 5

PREDICTION: Montgomery 3, (at) Rancho Cotate 1
FINAL: Montgomery 7, Rancho Cotate 1

PREDICTION: Ukiah 3, (at) Piner 1
FINAL: Piner 2, Ukiah 0

PREDICTION: (at) Healdsburg 3, El Molino 1
FINAL: Healdsburg 1, El Molino 1

PREDICTION: (at) Petaluma 1, Casa Grande 0

PREDICTION: (at) Windsor 2, Sonoma Valley 1