The old adage says that iron sharpens iron. The girls soccer teams of the Class 3A Metro League wouldn't necessarily disagree with that.
When this week's edition of the CHSAANow.com soccer rankings were released, the top three spots were occupied by Metro League teams.
The league also has teams holding three spots in the bottom half of the top 10. Something has to give and there can only be one league champion and also just one state champion — though each Metro League team likely feels like it can be the one to hoist championship gold next month.
Perhaps one of the more intriguing aspects of each team in the league is that none of them are built around the outstanding play of one player in particular. Stargate's Kayla Futakami leads all of 3A in goals (29) which has certainly helped the Eagles remain competitive in a tough a league.
Colorado Academy's Mari Annest and Kent Denver's Annabelle Johnson have each scored 17 times which puts them inside of 3A's top-10 goal scorers, but overall the players in the Metro aren't putting up video game numbers to get wins, they're playing sound, team soccer to get it done.
Jefferson Academy holds the top spot in the 3A rankings this week and travel to Lewis-Palmer where the game ended in a scoreless tie. Denise Sutton's crew doesn't score a lot of goals this year as Kristen Capan leads the team with six.
But scoring on the Jaguars is proving to be difficult with Brooklyn Kirkpatrick protecting the net. In over 550 minutes as the keeper, she has only given up two goals this season. It's easy to come into a season with confidence after hold another talented Metro team in Kent Denver to just one goal in last year's state championship game.
But that's the way things tend to work in this league. Playing against the best will help make each player better on any given day.
Iron sharpens iron.
This hasn't just been the case this year. For the last several years, the Metro League has not only been the home of some of the best teams in state, but to state champions.
Jefferson Academy topped Kent Denver in the championship game last year and Mira Houck received the same honor last year.
Overall, four of the last five 3A state champions call the Metro League home. Colorado Academy went back-to-back in 2014-15. Kent Denver secured the title back in 2016 and then Jefferson Academy emerged as champion last year.
This year is shaping up for more of the same level of dominance. Three of the four state semifinal teams from last year came from the Metro League. With the way the games are unfolding in 2019, it should be no surprise if that's the case once again.