COACH: Robert Hoki.
LAST SEASON'S RECORD: 18-4-2 (district champion, region semifinalist).
KEY RETURNERS: Tim Woods, Sr., MF; Mike Baumann, Jr., F; Eric Walasek, Sr., sweeper; Aaron Roth, Sr., D; George Kirshy, Jr., F.
KEY LOSSES: Sean O'Sullivan, Carlos Rodriguez, Mike Dye, Dave Pointec.
KEY NEWCOMERS: John Grimmett, Jr., D; Tom Pellito, So., MF; Manuel Talocco, Jr., F.
OUTLOOK: Central returns talented goal-scorers in Woods and Kirshy, but must learn how to create for itself after the graduation of the greatest player and playmaker in school history, Sean O'Sullivan, who set school records with 23 assists as a junior and 27 goals (and 21 more assists) as a senior. The formula did not work well in a 1-0 season-opening loss to Lecanto, when the Bears fell behind in the first five minutes and panicked. Hoki, a first-time high school coach, said he will adapt to the style Central played under former coach John Andruss and apply some of his own tactics, such as ball control and a reduction of overly physical play.
SCHEDULE: Nov. 18 _ at Lecanto, 7:30 p.m.; Nov. 20 _ Mitchell, 7; Nov. 25 _ Gulf, 7; Nov. 26 _ Citrus, 8; Dec. 2 _ Gulf, 7; Dec. 4 _ Ridgewood, 8; Dec. 6 _ Mitchell, 7; Dec. 9 _ at Hernando, 8; Dec. 11 _ at Leesburg, 8; Dec. 13 _ Springstead, 8; Dec. 16 _ at East Ridge, 8; Dec. 20 _ at Springstead, 8; Jan. 6 _ at Citrus, 7:30; Jan. 8 _ Leesburg, 8; Jan. 13 _ Hernando, 8; Jan. 15 _ at Ridgewood, 8; Jan. 17 _ Hudson, 7; Jan. 22 _ East Ridge, 8; Jan. 24 _ Crystal River, 8; Jan. 28 _ Lecanto, 8; Jan. 29 _ 7:30.
COACH: John Bifulco.
LAST SEASON'S RECORD: 1-15-1.
KEY RETURNERS: Jason Lewis, Jr., GK; Alex Hensley, Sr., D; Zac Lukas, Jr., MF.
KEY LOSSES: Jagren Castillo, Jr. (playing basketball).
KEY NEWCOMERS: David McDermott, Jr., striker; Rick Northrup, Jr., striker.
OUTLOOK: Finally, there is hope that Hernando can be about more than losing and bruises. John Bifulco, the winningest prep coach in county history (89-24-14) who has led Springstead boys and girls teams deep into the playoffs, takes over a rebuilding project for a program that was 3-30-1 the past two seasons. Bifulco's first mission was to undo the "boot ball" offensive philosophy of kicking and chasing in favor of a desire to possess the ball. The Leopards defense should be adequate early in the season, and Bifulco expects the offense to be the last element to arrive. That will be just fine, Bifulco said. "All the season is," he said, "is preparation for districts. You want to be ready then, but you want to get a few wins in there so you don't have to face the top-seeded team. Do that and anything can happen."
SCHEDULE: Nov. 20 _ North Marion 6 p.m.; Nov. 22 _ Lecanto, 8; Nov. 25 _ at Citrus, 7:30; Nov. 26 _ Springstead, 8; Dec. 4 _ Crystal River, 8; Dec. 6 _ Dunnellon, 8; Dec. 9 _ Central, 8; Dec. 11 _ at North Marion, 6; Dec. 13 _ at Lecanto, 7:30; Dec. 17 _ Pasco, 7:30; Jan. 7 _ West Port, 6; Jan. 8 _ at Citrus, 8; Jan. 10 _ at Crystal River, 7:30; Jan. 13 _ at Central, 8; Jan. 15 _ at Dunnellon, 6; Jan. 22 _ at West Port, 8; Jan. 24 _ at Pasco, 8; Jan. 29 _ at Springstead, 8.
COACH: Sal Calabrese.
LAST SEASON'S RECORD: 16-4-2 (region finalist).
KEY RETURNERS: Danny Calabrese, Sr., GK; Greg Emmerman, Sr., MF; Ryan Greene, Sr., F; Jordan Magrini, Sr., F; Peter Golembiewski, Jr., D; Kyle Munson, Jr., D; Devon Shaw, Jr., MF.
KEY LOSSES: Mikey Sullivan, Stephen Brand, Bobby Colon.
KEY NEWCOMERS: R.J. Capozza, Jr., D; Justin Greene, So., F; Philipp Holtkamp, Jr., MF; Ronnie Tencza, Jr., MF.
OUTLOOK: The Eagles seem primed for another deep playoff run after falling in the region final last season. Coach Sal Calabrese's system stresses defense, ball possession and socialist scoring, which allows Springstead to continually plug in new parts with little drop-off. Midfielder Greg Emmerman returns as the most prolific scoring threat (11 goals, nine assists last year) and should be complimented by Ryan Greene (seven goals, four assists) and Jordan Magrini (nine goals, three assists). The graduation of Mikey Sullivan will hurt on defense, but Danny Calabrese returns a season after posting a 0.83 goals against average.
SCHEDULE: Nov. 22 _ Leesburg, 8 p.m.; Nov. 25 _ at Ridgewood, 8; Nov. 26 _ at Hernando, 8; Dec. 2 _ (Palm Harbor tournament) vs. Countryside, 6; Dec. 3 _ (Palm Harbor tournament) vs. Wharton, 8; Dec. 4 _ (Palm Harbor tournament) vs. Mitchell, 8; Dec. 6 _ Palm Harbor tournament finals; Dec. 9 _ Lecanto, 8; Dec. 13 _ at Central, 8; Dec. 16 _ Ridgewood, 8; Dec. 18 _ at East Ridge, 8; Dec. 20 _ Central, 8; Jan. 10 _ at Leesburg, 8; Jan. 13 _ at Crystal River, 7:30; Jan. 15 _ at Mitchell, 8; Jan. 17 _ East Ridge, 8; Jan. 22 _ at Lecanto, 7:30; Jan. 24 _ Citrus, 8; Jan. 27 _ Crystal River, 8; Jan. 29 _ Hernando, 8.
_ Compiled by Brant James.