Undefeated Bridgewater-Raritan has already dominated most of Somerset County's other top teams with its potent combination of offensive balance, defensive prowess and experience.
Now it has the chance to do it all over again in tournament form. The 11-0 Panthers, riding a state-leading 26-game winning streak, were awarded the No. 1 seed the 10th Somerset County Tournament, which gets underway with two games Monday.
Bridgewater-- No.1 in The MSG Varsity Power Rankings and the reigning SCT and Tournament of Champions king-- has a bye until the quarterfinals Wednesday, as do second-seeded Ridge, third-seeded Montgomery, fourth-seeded Somerville, fifth-seeded Pingry and sixth-seeded Hillsborough.
The Panthers have not played Somerville (12-0), but did defeat those other four teams by a cumulative score of 42-14 behind the steady offensive output of Scott Bieda (30 goals, 22 assists), Ryan Hollingsworth (22 goals) and John Longrodo (19), the facework work of Vincent Colatriano and the defense of Evan Mock, Connor Murphy and Andrew Hengenmuhle.
The first round will see 10-Watchung Hills at 7-Immaculata and 9-Bernards at 8-Rutgers Prep on Monday. Immaculata fell to Bridgewater, 14-6, in last year's final and claimed the 2010 title with a win over Ridge.
The quarterfinals will be Wednesday at the field of the higher seed and the semifinals are May 12 at the higher seed. The championship is May 16 at Bridgewater-Raritan.
SOMERSET COUNTY TOURNMENT
10-Watchung Hills at 7-Immaculata
9-Bernards at 8-Rutgers Prep
Bernards/Rutgers Prep winner at 1-Bridgewater-Raritan
Watchung Hills/Immaculata winner at 2-Ridge
6-Hillsborough at 3-Montgomery
5-Pingry at 4-Somerville
Mike Kinney covers boys lacrosse for MSG Varsity. Follow him on Twitter: @MikeKinneyHS