MaxPreps is celebrating 20 years as America’s source for high
school sports this month. Back in 2002, the site consisted of schedule,
score and roster data for teams in the Sacramento area and quickly
expanded across the state of California. Less than two years later, it
encompassed the entire country.
of two decades of high school sports coverage, we are looking back at
some of the greatest athletes, teams and stories of the past 20 years.
Our rewind continues today with a breakdown of 20 great single-season teams
since 2002 (alphabetical by sport).
2004 Chatsworth (Calif.) baseball
The Chancellors were the nation's top
team in 2003 after finishing 33-1 and followed that with a 35-0 season.
For the second time, Chatsworth was honored as the nation's top team by
USA Today and Baseball America. Under head coach Tom Muesborn, the
Chancellors were led by Jason Dominguez, who went 13-0 on the mound, and Willie
Cabrera with a state record of 72 hits. Also in the mix were freshmen
and Mike Moustakas
, both of whom would play in the Majors.
2022 St. Mary's Prep (Orchard Lake, Mich.) baseball
2019-20 Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.) boys basketball
There's always a chance of
falling for the recency bias trap in naming a current team among the
best. But the 2022 Eaglets rise above scrutiny when you look at the
sheer dominance of their season. St. Mary's Prep went 44-0, going
wire-to-wire as the No. 1 team in the MaxPreps Top 25 and finishing as a
consensus top team among other media. The Eaglets scored 411 runs while surrendering
53. They had 11 players hit better than .333 and were led by Brock Porter
, who was taken in the fourth round of the recent MLB Draft. Ike Irish
(.433, 45 RBI) and Jake Dresselhouse
(.384, seven HRs) were among the team's stars at the plate.
The Eagles were deep, talented and unstoppable. Kevin Boyle's squad went 25-0, winning the GEICO Nationals title along with the MaxPreps National Championship. What made Montverde so dominant? The Eagles had five players — Cade Cunningham
, Scottie Barnes
, Moses Moody
, Day'Ron Sharpe
and Caleb Houstan
— selected in either the first or second round of the NBA Draft with a few still playing college ball. Yet the group was so unselfish and focused on winning that seven players averaged 8.3 points or more and none played more than 22 minutes per night. The Eagles won by an average of 39 points with seven victories over MaxPreps Top 25 opponents.
2015-16 Chino Hills (Calif.) boys basketball
If the Huskies weren't the best team in the past 20 years, they certainly were the most entertaining. Led by senior Lonzo Ball
— who was joined by brothers LiAngelo
, a junior, and LaMelo
, a freshman — along with freshman Onyeka Okongwu
, the 35-0 Huskies were the CIF Open Division champions, the MaxPreps National Champions and consensus No. 1. They averaged 97.9 points per night and topped the 100-point mark 18 times. Chino Hills outscored opponents by an average of 28.4 points per contest. National Player of the Year Lonzo Ball averaged 23.9 points, 11.5 assists, 11.3 rebounds and 5.1 steals per contest.
2005-06 Lawrence North (Indianapolis) boys basketball
Led by Greg Oden
and Mike Conley, the Wildcats won 45 straight and three consecutive Hoosier State titles. Although his potential never panned out in the NBA, Oden was among the most dominant high school players of the 2000s, averaging 22.1 points, 105 rebounds and 3.5 blocks, while shooting 74 percent from the field. After leaving the 29-0 Wildcats, Conley and Oden continued their winning ways and led Ohio State to the national championship game as freshmen.2002-03 St. Vincent-St. Mary (Akron, Ohio) boys basketball
Before he was dominating the NBA, LeBron James was a virtual wrecking crew at the prep level. He led the Fighting Irish to a 26-0 mark his senior season, capping three straight seasons as a Parade All-American. Along with Dru Joyce III, Willie McGee, Romeo Travis and Sian Cotton, St. Vincent-St. Mary was the consensus No. 1 in the country. James' dominance was such that he led the Irish to a 101-6 mark, landed on the cover of Sports Illustrated
and was the reason ESPN televised its first high school basketball game.
2010- 2011 Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) girls basketball
led the Monarchs to a CIF Division I state title and the No. 1 ranking in the final MaxPreps Top 25. Kevin Kiernan masterfully guided the Monarchs to a 34-1 record (the lone loss was to Long Beach Poly at the Nike TOC), capped by a 59-47 CIF title win over Berkeley. Mosqueda-Lewis averaged 22.1 points before moving on to star at UConn and in the WNBA. Alexyz Vaioletama
, who averaged more than 10 points per game, and junior Jordan Adams
(10.3 ppg) were also major contributors.2002-03 Lynwood (Calif.) girls basketball
The Knights of the early 2000s were dominant … real dominant. Lynwood went 65-1 over two seasons, winning the state championship in 2002 and 2003. The 2002 team finished 33-0 and was ranked No. 1 by USA Today. Three Knights landed on the Cal-Hi Sports All-State team, including sophomore of the year Sa'de Wiley-Gatewood and seniors Janice Bright and Andrea Adams. Bright was a Parade All-American in 2002 while Wiley-Gatewood would earn Parade National Player of the Year honors two years later.
2005-06 Christ the King (Middle Village, N.Y.) girls basketball
The Royals needed to beat an Epiphanny Prince-led Murry Bergtraum team to win its second straight Federation Tournament championship. McDonald's Player of the Year Tina Charles ended the 79-66 victory over the national No. 2 with a dunk. Christ the King won 57 straight between 2005 and 2006, including 30-0 in 2006. Charles averaged 26.5 points, 14.8 rebounds and 5.2 blocked shots her senior year. The Royals also defeated Collins Hill and Maya Moore at the Nike TOC.
2015-16 Duncanville (Texas) girls basketball
The Duncanville program has set an unrivaled standard of excellence — the Pantherettes have won 11 state championships and own two of the longest win streaks in history with a 134-game streak from 1987 to 1991 and a 105-game win streak from 2011 to 2014. However, the 2016 version might have been the best of them all. Madison Townley
, Zaay Green
and McDonald's All-American Ciera Johnson
led a squad that was a unanimous pick among MaxPreps, USA Today and Blue Star as the No. 1 team in the nation. While Texas teams sometimes suffer in national rankings because they rarely play outside of the state, Duncanville (39-0) picked up a 64-43 win over Blackman (Murfreesboro, Tenn.), which was also a top 25 team. The Pantherettes won their games by an average of 36 points.2003 De La Salle (Concord, Calif.) football
The Spartans' 2003 team is widely regarded as one of the best teams of "The Streak" — a 151-game win streak stretching across 12 years. While the 2001 team was named the greatest high school football team of all time, the 2003 team lands No. 2 on that list. It was the fourth of four straight unbeaten, national championship teams where they outscored opponents 531-65. The Spartans also notched win No. 151 with a 39-0 North Coast Section title victory over Pittsburg. Oregon Duck recruits Terrance Kelly at linebacker, Cameron Colvin at wide receiver and Willie Glasper at defensive back led the way.
The Gaels wanted all the smoke. The Las Vegas power knocked off five titans from four states, beating two-time Texas champion Cedar Hill 44-14, besting eventual Florida 4A champ Cocoa 46-10, California Open Division winner St. John Bosco 35-20, Hawaii Open Division runner-up Kahuku 35-7 and Florida 7A champion St. Thomas Aquinas 25-24 in three overtimes. Quarterback Tate Martell
was the MaxPreps National Player of the Year, Haskell Garrett
and Bubba Bolden
each were All-Americans and Biaggio Ali Walsh
, grandson of Muhammad Ali, led the Gaels in scoring with 134 points and 1,462 yards rushing. Gorman's average margin of victory over Nevada foes was 55 points.2017 Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) football
The first of two Bruce Rollinson-led Monarchs teams, the 2017 squad averaged nearly 50 points per game while facing a scheduling gauntlet. Mater Dei tackled Trinity League foes St. John Bosco (31-21), Orange Lutheran (51-21) and Servite (51-7) while also tacking on wins against Bishop Gorman (35-21) and Bergen Catholic (62-14). The Monarchs dominated De La Salle 52-21 for the Open Division title. Junior J.T. Daniels
, who skipped his senior season, was the MaxPreps National Player of the Year throwing for 4,123 yards and 52 touchdowns to end his three-year career with more than 12,000 yards passing and 152 TDs. 2022 Mater Dei football
The Monarchs, like they did four seasons prior, started and finished as the no-doubt No. 1 team in the land. The 2022 Mater Dei team laid waste to all comers, winning 11 of 12 games by at least two scores while outscoring foes 548-152. Rollinson's bunch also beat five teams ranked in the MaxPreps Top 25 — No. 5 Servite (twice), No. 6 St. John Bosco, No. 10 Corona Centennial and No. 1 Duncanville. Elijah Brown, a rising junior, looks to be the next in a long line of Mater Dei quarterbacks. The Class of 2024 star is 17-0 as a starter and already has thrown for 3,500-plus yards and 45 touchdowns while completing nearly 73 percent of his passes.
The Tigers won their eighth state title in 2015 and one could argue it was their most dominant. Katy went 16-0 to win the 6A title, but it was how the Tigers mauled their competition that stood above the rest. Katy scored 778 points while allowing a paltry 62, including 18 in the regular season. The Tigers shut 10 teams out, including three playoff opponents. In the title win over Lake Travis, Katy held their opponent to seven points — 39 under their season average. Katy was led by all-state running back Kyle Porter (1,940 yards and 37 TDS) along with a quintet of all-state defensive players — defensive end Corey Bethley
, linebackers Paddy Fisher
and JoVanni Stewart
, and safeties Colin Wilder and Travis Whillock
.2005 Southlake Carroll (Southlake, Texas) football
The 2005 season was the middle of a three-peat by the Dragons that included 48 straight wins under coach Todd Dodge and a trifecta of uber-talented quarterbacks. Like his predecessor Chase Daniel in 2004, Greg McElroy was the catalyst behind a potent Southlake Carroll offense. He threw for more than 4,500 yards, 56 touchdowns and nine interceptions as Carroll went 16-0. Dodge's 2005 squad had three shutouts, hit the 60-point mark twice, scored 50-plus on three occasions and topped 40 points three times. They averaged 43 points on offense in the playoffs and won the 5A title 34-20 over Katy as McElroy threw four scores and the Dragons churned out more than 500 yards of offense.
2011 Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.) football
Coach Greg Toal knew his squad was legit "Oh, we're the No. 1 team in the country," He was quoted after beating Bergen Catholic 42-14 for the state Non-Public Group 4 title. "We're the best football team in the country. There ain't no doubt about that. ... We play the best teams and we don't back down from anybody. So, yeah, this is the best team." In the middle of a 45-game win streak, the Ironmen were the 2011-12 MaxPreps Boys Team of the Year after ripping through a schedule that included Mission Viejo (Calif.), St. Edward (Ohio), St. Joseph Regional (N.J.) and Bergen Catholic twice. Their only scare was a 22-16 nail-biter at Manatee (Bradenton, Fla.), the nation's No. 1 team heading into the 2012 season. Even with standouts like Jabrill Peppers
(921 yards rushing, 19 TDs), receiver Leeonte Carroo
, running back and Notre Dame signee Elijah Shumate
and quarterback Mike Yankovich
on offense, it was the defense that was the catalyst. Don Bosco only allowed four teams into double figures, giving up 92 points in 11 games.2004 Fort Bend Elkins (Missouri City, Texas) softball
The Knights posted 39 wins in 2004 in the middle of their 76-game win streak, winning their first state title after falling short in 2002 and 2003. Elkins was ranked No. 1 by USA Today after posting 32 shutouts, including wins over state champions in California, Arizona and New Mexico. The Knights were led by Brette Reagan, Ragan Blake (29-0) and Erin Howe.
2009 Archbishop Mitty (San Jose, Calif.) softball
Led by superstar Keilani Ricketts
, the Monarchs went 32-0 and are regarded by Cal-Hi Sports to be the state's greatest softball team of all-time. Ricketts, who later led Oklahoma to a NCAA title, went 22-0, struck out 347, allowed two earned runs with a paltry 0.10 ERA. She also hit .456 with nine homers and 36 RBI. Facing then-No. 1 Sheldon at the Livermore Stampede, Ricketts gave up a first-inning home run before belting a three-run shot in the bottom of the frame and then struck out the next 20 Huskies. 2022 Marymount (Los Angeles) volleyball
Featuring five MaxPreps All-Americans, including National Player of the Year Elia Rubin
, the Sailors blasted past all-comers en route to a 35-0 record and CIF Open Division title. But it wasn't just the unblemished record that set the Sailors apart … it was how they decimated their competition. Marymount lost eight sets all season against a grueling national schedule that included Archbishop Mitty, Hamilton, Mercy, Hagerty, Oviedo and Mount Notre Dame in addition to a stacked SoCal and California slate.