1. Mater Dei: The Monarchs are the team to beat, but can anybody actually do that? They have 13 returners from last year’s team that won the Orange County and Southern Section titles.
2. Foothill: The Knights lost in the O.C. final last year. They appear strong enough to make it to at least the county semifinals this year. Seniors Ally Parkhill and Brie Ratkevich will be key leaders this year.
3. St. Margaret’s: The Tartans have a lot of young talent, and combined with first-team All-County returner Cameron Manor, they will be looking to bounce back from last year’s second-round playoff exit.
4. Corona del Mar: The Sea Kings advanced to the county final four last year and return a lot of key players, including All-County selections Kennedy and Katherine Mulvaney, Jensen Coop and Ashley Olson.
5. Tesoro: The Titans, who graduated just three seniors from last season’s team, have an experienced roster ready to retain their South Coast League title. The senior quartet of Kaitlyn Martinez, Emma Roberson, Hannah Maurer and Charlotte Hess combined to score 136 goals.
6. Trabuco Hills: The Mustangs advanced to the second round of the playoffs last year and finished second in the South Coast League. Sophomore Hennessey Evans earned second-team All-County honors as a freshman.
7. Newport Harbor: The Sailors reached the O.C. final four last year and could be on the verge of another big year, led by nine seniors, including midfielder Katie Hendrix and Sarah Farley.
8. San Juan Hills: The Stallions have been moved to the South Coast League and have to replace All-County standout Journey Fischbeck. San Juan Hills returns seniors Hannah Miller (48 goals, 14 assists) and Elena Guillen (43). Juniors Bridget Cain and Taylor Austin are also keys to the offense.
9. Beckman: The Patriots will be counting on their youth to lead the way this year. They have just three seniors on the roster. Sophomore Carly Tobias and junior Taylor Stern are already off to hot scoring starts.
10. Santa Margarita: First-team All-County midfielder Erin DiBernardo returns to lead the Eagles this year. The Eagles advanced to the first round of the O.C. playoffs last year.