Oregon’s top high school boys soccer players: Meet the state’s best midfielders

We’ve been taking a position-by-position look at some of the top players in Oregon high school boys soccer. Our fourth list focuses on the midfielders. (Goalkeepers | Defenders | Forwards)

There are hundreds of standout soccer players in Oregon and these lists are not intended to be comprehensive! Let us know about any other midfielders you think should be added.

Ben Augee (Tualatin) photo by Dan Brood

M/F Ben Augee, Sr., Tualatin

Augee, a High School All-American Watch List selection, is a product of the Portland Timbers Academy who was named to US Youth Soccer’s 2021 17U National Championship Best XI playing for United PDX. He didn’t join the Timberwolves until the pandemic season in the spring. He had seven goals and three assists as the Timberwolves opened the season 5-3-1. “Ben is unquestionably one of the most talented players in the state and the leader of our team,” Tualatin coach Chris Duke said. “As an attacking player, his ability to drop deep, receive the ball and run at the defense with pace creates consistent problems for the opposing team. He additionally has a tireless work rate and willingness to do the defensive work of pressing high and creating turnovers in dangerous positions on the field.” 

M Lukas Von Koch, Sr., Westside Christian

Von Koch is a four-year starter and captain for the Eagles who made the all-district second team as a sophomore two seasons ago. “Lukas is a strong leader who controls the tempo of the game through his ability to keep the ball and place the team in a great position to attack,” Westside Christian coach Jason Housley said.

M Cameron Little, Jr., Wilsonville

Little has battled injuries throughout the fall, missing several games, but when he plays, he holds down the holding center midfield position. “He has good vision, makes good tackles and is a really big part of our defense,” Wildcats co-coach Ian Reschke said.

M Josh Serna, Jr., Brookings-Harbor

Serna was an all-league selection as a sophomore during the spring season, when he had four goals and two assists. He’s an avid golfer who qualified for the Southern Oregon Championships in May. “Josh is a key player in the midfield with his strength and size,” Bruins coach Jess Beaman said. “He watches the game develop well with good vision and precise passing to his teammates. He also has a strong leg and can score from long distances.”

M Seth Sorensen, Jr., Westside Christian

Sorensen transferred from West Linn and solidified the Eagles defense as a defensive midfielder. “Seth is an animal who knows how to defend and stop any attack,” Westside Christian coach Jason Housley said. “Seth is extremely strong and a fierce competitor.”

M Fabian Villa, Sr., Brookings-Harbor

Villa is a four-year starter for the Bruins who broke through as a sophomore, when he had 23 goals and 26 assists and made the Class 3A/2A/1A all-state second team. He has made the all-league team each of the past two seasons. “Fabian has played since he could walk,” Bruins coach Jess Beaman said. “His quickness on the field frustrates other teams, and his precise passing continually creates opportunities for our team to score. He is a very patient player and successfully attacks the moment defenders relax.” 

M/F Kaden Young, Sr., West Salem

Young was a first-team all-conference selection during the spring, when the Titans played in a Salem-area league. In their first six games this season, he had five goals and two assists. His prized possession? A 1993 Toyota Previa minivan that he’s decked out with a sound system and neon kit. 

M Aidan Pierias, Sr., Newport    

Pierias has served as a team captain the past two seasons. The center midfielder was an honorable mention all-Oregon West selection as a freshman and made the Lincoln County all-star team during the spring. A four-year player for OVF Alliance who is getting looks from Pacific and Linfield, he had four goals and an assist during the first few weeks of the fall season. “He is quiet but plays with intensity and leaves it all on the field,” Cubs coach Ollie Richardson said. “He has great vision and is unselfish.”

M Andrew Turner, Sr., Sunset    

Turner spends most of his free time off the pitch skiing or surfing, but when he’s on the soccer field, he’s all business — a first-team all-Metro honoree whom Apollos coach Conrad Buck calls “that rare complete-package central midfielder. He seamlessly transitions from physical destroyer on defense to creative playmaker on offense. He is an inspiration to the team both through his tireless play and his vocal leadership.”     

M Bren Schneiter, Jr., Central Linn    

Schneiter, a first-team all-district selection his first two seasons for the Cobras, has earned the nickname Curious George from his teammates for his inquisitive mind that has him exploring an engineering career. He’s a 6-foot-3 aerial presence in the midfield who makes an attractive target in the penalty area on set pieces. “Bren is the rock in the middle of our team who wins balls, keeps possession and provides the precise through balls that allow our forwards to have high-percentage chances on goal,” said his father and coach, Hans. “His skill on the ball allows him to break lines, create overloads and finish on goal or set up a teammate.”

M Bryan Hernandez, Sr., Woodburn    

Hernandez had four goals and five assists as a sophomore, when he helped the Bulldogs win a fourth consecutive state championship and second at Class 4A. The center midfielder has a unique saying to get his teammates to refocus, according to coach Leroy Sanchez. “He says, ‘Guys, don’t get lost in the sauce,’ and it’s something that makes me and the team laugh,” Sanchez said. “Bryan is an incredibly skilled player and I believe to be one of the top center midfield players in the state. Many teams underestimate him due to his smaller stature, but he has the heart of a lion and works hard on both sides of the ball.”

M Bryan Sedano, Jr., Central Linn    

Sedano was a first-team all-league selection each of his first two seasons for the Cobras, missing out on player of the year honors as a sophomore by one vote. Central Linn coach Hans Schneiter considers him a dead-ball specialist, calling on him to deliver set pieces. “Many teams underestimate Bryan because of his size,” Schneiter said. “His quickness, incredible skill on the ball, and his tenacity help him get out of tight spaces and penetrate through compact defenses. He creates on the dribble and sets up teammates or scores.”

M Caden Davis, Sr., Franklin    

Davis is one of the few remaining links to the Lightning’s first Class 6A state championship team in 2019, when he was a first-team all-PIL and second-team all-state selection and had assists in the semifinal and title games. He had four goals and three assists during the spring season and entered this season on the High School All-American Watch List. He has battled knee tendonitis and a broken jaw suffered while playing futsal this season, as well as sustaining cuts and bruises after falling off his bicycle. “He’s tough as nails, but maybe a bit unlucky at times,” Franklin coach Jose Milian said. “Caden is the type of player you wish you had three or four of. It’s always good for a team when your most skilled player is also the hardest working, and Caden consistently gives us that element.”

M Daniel Cox, Sr., Delphian    

Cox grew up playing “the beautiful game” in Madrid, Spain, where his passion for the game blossomed. He swings between a central defending and attacking midfielder role for the Dragons, making the all-district honorable mention list in the spring.     

M Josue Dolores Lopez, Sr., Aloha    

Lopez has been a standout for the Warriors the past three seasons, making the all-Metro first team as a sophomore and earning a spot on the High School All-American Watch List this season. He is weighing offers from Oregon State, Portland, Portland State, Corban and George Fox. “From an early age, Josue has not only shown his incredible skill with the ball but also his leadership personality,” Aloha coach Enrique Abad said. “I have asked him to play in various positions this season, and without hesitation, he has done so without asking or complaining. He is smart enough to take any position and adapt incredibly fast. No matter what position he has to play in, Josue has always done an excellent job.” 

M Kevin Mendez Ochoa, Jr., Ridgeview    

Mendez Ochoa is a product of the Portland Timbers Academy who didn’t play for the Ravens until his sophomore season, when he made the all-Intermountain first team. He also is a nationally ranked boxer who has won several USA Boxing and Silver Gloves titles during his career. “Kevin is every coach’s dream,” Ridgeview coach Jimmy Kim said. “He combines a high level of skill with work ethic, knowledge and humility. A complete package.”

M Kevin Serrano Maldonado, So., La Salle Prep    

Maldonado’s game belies his age as he controls the middle of the field for the Falcons. “He’s a mature player who can dictate the team’s attacking tempo with his ability to calm play, then speed it up when it’s required,” La Salle Prep coach Monty Hawkins said. “A great passer and finisher.”

M Lewis MacPherson, Sr., Lincoln    

MacPherson is a box-to-box center midfielder who had a goal and three assists during the spring season, when he proved himself “essential to keeping us balanced in the midfield,” said Cardinals coach Pablo Dipascuale. MacPherson is one of 12 cousins in his family — his mother’s side lives in Wyoming, where his grandmother owns vast ranchlands where the closest town of at least 1,000 people is nearly 100 miles away. “It’s one of his favorite places to visit,” Dipascuale said.   

M Minghan Cui, Sr., Delphian    

Cui is a Chinese national who was stuck in his home country during the pandemic and only returned to the Sheridan school this fall. The diehard Chelsea fan “was dearly missed both on the pitch and in the classroom last year,” said Dragons coach JJ Gonzalez. “There were a lot of obstacles that he had to overcome to return to Delphian, but he was able to persist and make it go right to be here.”     

M Mitchel Munzing, Sr., Grant    

Munzing got his first taste of varsity action as a freshman callup for the 2018 Class 6A state playoffs. He’s entrenched himself in the starting lineup as an attacking midfielder ever since, becoming an integral piece of the Generals’ buildup play on offense. He had three goals and an assist during the spring. He’s looking at several Division III schools and universities in Japan to continue his playing career next year. “He always has the tendency to be in the right place at the right time with the quality and composure to finish in the big moments of a match,” Grant coach Erik Miller said.

M Oliver Stone, Sr., Lincoln    

Stone is equally comfortable sitting back as a holding defensive midfielder or jumping in as an attacking midfielder, although it’s clear where Cardinals coach Pablo Dipascuale wants him to play. “He is the best ‘6’ I’ve seen play so far this season,” Dipascuale said of Stone, who had four assists in the spring season. “He is fundamental to our team, as his consistency and dedication are unmatched.”     

M Quentin Strange, Jr., La Salle Prep    

Strange played with older brother Luke on the Falcons’ Class 5A state championship team as a freshman in 2019 and has quickly developed into one of the state’s top players. “He’s a fluid, strong attacker who pulls the strings unlocking the opponent’s defense with precise passing in tight spaces and combination play with teammates,” La Salle Prep coach Monty Hawkins said.

M Seb Buscaglia, Sr., Cleveland    

Buscaglia was a second-team all-PIL selection as a sophomore, when he helped the Warriors reach the Class 6A semifinals for the first time in school history (they made the 5A semifinals in 2011). “Seb is a phenomenal attacking threat with incredible ball skills and a tremendous shot,” Cleveland coach Nicholas Yoder said.

M Sergio Yahir Varela, Jr., Century    

Varela was the only freshman to make the all-Pacific team in 2019, when he made the second team. He again made the second team during the spring season, and after playing in the ODP regional tournament this year, he scored five goals in the Jaguars’ first three games this season.     

M/D Danny Anguiano, Sr., Dayton    

Anguiano had nine goals and 15 assists during the spring, when he made the all-district first team for the second time. Pirates coach Jony Miramontes called him “a dynamic and smart midfielder. His constant box to box play and ability to play multiple positions makes him special.”

M/D Graysen Voss, Jr., Banks    

Voss led Banks in scoring during the spring season and was a first-team all-Cowapa and Class 4A all-state honorable mention selection. Banks coach Jimmy Bogroff marvels at Voss’ work ethic. “Graysen has a high win-rate and plays with tremendous poise,” Bogroff said. “He always wants to outwork everyone. Very few players never take a play off in practice, but he’s one. One time, I tried to end practice 10 minutes early and he wouldn’t let me.”

M/D Tony Ramirez-Lopez, Jr., Franklin    

Ramirez-Lopez scored a team-high eight goals during the spring, his first season with the Lightning after spending time playing for the Timbers Academy. He was a defender for most of his career, but Franklin coach Jose Milian moved him to the midfield, where he has thrived. “Tony is the most versatile player on our team,” Milian said. “Along with having a very high soccer IQ, his combination of skill, vision and quickness allows us some flexibility on where to put him on the field in any given match.”     

M/F Caden Gallegos, Sr., Phoenix    

Gallegos was a BMX racer growing up but has moved on to become a top goal scorer playing alongside two-time conference player of the year Victor Martinez. Gallegos had 10 goals and eight assists during the spring and made the all-Skyline first team. “Caden brings a single-minded focus to his passions that, when harnessed to his will, is truly a force of nature and will make him a great success,” said his coach and father, Chris.    

M/F Cruz Mendola, Jr., Banks    

Mendola made the all-Cowapa honorable mention list during the spring, and Banks coach Jimmy Bogroff called him one of the team’s most improved players this season. “Cruz has put in a ton of work since the spring, and it has really shown up in his ability to control play in the midfield,” Bogroff said. “He led our team in assists last year and is a threat every time he touches the ball.”

M/F Darren Green, Sr., Franklin    

Green missed most of the 2020 season because of injury after starting for the 2019 Class 6A state championship team. He didn’t start playing soccer seriously until middle school but has become a key contributor for the Lightning as they look to defend their title in the playoffs this fall. He has drawn attention from Gonzaga, Grand Canyon, Dixie State and the University of Washington. “Darren is a difference-maker for our team,” Franklin coach Jose Milian said. “His technical skills, speed and quickness make him a dangerous player from almost anywhere on the field.”

M/F Jorge Mejia, Sr., Phoenix    

Mejia blossomed during the pandemic-shortened spring season, when he had 16 goals and 10 assists and made the all-Skyline first team. He rewarded himself by working on the brand-new Subaru WRX he purchased when he turned 16. “Jorge has grown a lot over the years, playing with a great deal of finesse and confidence that has the ability to elevate others and their play,” Pirates coach Chris Gallegos said.

M/F Max Edwards, Sr., Lincoln    

Cardinals coach Pablo Dipascuale can plug Edwards — an all-PIL selection as a sophomore who played for an academy in England in the spring of 2019 and also played in Germany and Holland — anywhere in the attack, knowing he’ll deliver. He had two goals and six assists during the spring season, and he’ll return to Lancashire, England, following graduation to play for Fleetwood Town FC’s professional academy next year. “Max is a very gifted footballer,” Dipascuale said. “The ball naturally gravitates to him.”

M Tyson Bustamante, Sr., Roseburg

Bustamante is a two-time all-Southwest selection who has 18 goals and 13 assists in the past two seasons for Roseburg. “Tyson is a solid midfielder for our program,” said his coach and father, Ron Bustamante. “He can play every position on the field. He is very talented with the ball and consistently creates goal-scoring opportunities for his team. He also has a big physical presence defensively in the middle of the field.”

%d bloggers like this: