Palomar College will open the 2018 campaign in the Chaffey College Tournament this weekend looking for a three-peat in the Pacific Coast Athletic Conference. The Comets will have a host of programs looking to knock them off their perch.
Palomar finished 12-15 overall last season, winning the PCAC title by a nose over Grossmont College. The Comets have won two straight PCAC titles, going 12-2 in the process. Palomar returns their second leading scorer from a season ago in Terrin Davis. They also return Bryce Van Kemp, giving them two solid options in the offensive end. The Comets also return both goalkeepers from a season ago in Michael Mendiola and Tommy Preston, giving them leadership on the back end. Palomar opens the season on Saturday against Santa Monica College on Saturday.
The top challenger last season was Grossmont College, who finished 12-18 overall and 4-1 in PCAC play. The Griffins were had an all-freshman lineup last season, meaning they return a ton of experience. Ryan Blevitt was the headliner last season when he scored a team-high 87 goals, making the All-Southern California Second Team. He won't be alone as Cole Duffet (34 goals) and Wes Papike (25 goals) are both expected to return, giving the Griffins some offensive firepower. Grossmont opens the season against Mt. San Antonio College in the Citrus College Invitational.
San Diego Mesa finished .500 in conference play last season and hopes to improve on that finish in 2018. The Olympians will rely on veteran Austin Greenwell, who led all SDMC freshmen last season with 14 goals and 15 assists. Mesa also has returners Arman Hamrah and Reece Johnson, who cut their teeth last season behind a bevy of sophomores. The Olympians open with a PCAC match against San Diego Miramar College on September 5.
Speaking of San Diego Miramar, the Jets were 3-20 last season, going 1-4 in PCAC play. Miramar had only one sophomore on the team a season ago and if they can all the freshmen to return could quickly get things turned around. Miramar will open on September 5 with a conference match against Mesa.
Southwestern finished 0-17 last season, and are hopeful to get things turned around after a disappointing campaign. The Jaguars last finished .500 in 2015 when they were 12-12 overall and are hoping to get back to their winning ways when they open with a PCAC match at Palomar College on September 5.