The Battle for #1 Starts here.
"Simply put, there's no other event like it for girls soccer any time of the year. And no other event plays a bigger part in assessing the national landscape for winter girls soccer."
The National Elite Prep Showcase brings together the top high school girls soccer programs from around the country. It is a true college showcase for high school soccer. This is where the best come to play. The battle for #1 starts here. Olympians, National team, college and World Cup superstars, National and State champions have all competed in this event that is in its 16th year.
Fort Worth is the home to the nation’s top high school girls soccer showcase in January.
Eighteen years ago, the Nolan Showcase got started as an event very secondary in the tournament-heavy early January Texas high school scene. The 32-team Plano Tournament of Champions and a showcase event at Colleyville Heritage were the benchmarks. But it did not take long, bolstered by a coaching change at Colleyville Heritage and declining interest to host by Plano that opened the door for Jay Fitzgerald, the Nolan Catholic coach who serves as tournament co-director. Teams from nearly every winter-playing state have competed at NEPS and it's not uncommon for programs seeking national attention to vie for one of the coveted tournament spots. Over the past six years, no fewer than 10 FAB 50 teams were in action at NEPS, and the event has served to set up national title runs for a couple programs.
While there are other long-standing and important winter girls events, NEPS continues to be the most innovative. Beyond seeking the national elite programs to beef up the field, NEPS produces a college coach recruiting guide and uses the latest technology to enhance the experience -- complete with pre-event and post-event video. Last year, all matches at Nolan Catholic were shown on the NFHS Network.
The event is hosted by the Nolan Catholic Women's Soccer Program as well as the Southlake Carroll Lady Dragons.
While the format does not lead to an overall championship match, one thing is for certain this week, next week's SIMA FAB 50 No. 1 team likely will have earned the ranking on the field at NEPS.
ADDED IN 2019: NEPS Florida which took place December 19-21, 2019 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida including Nolan Catholic High School, St. Thomas Aquinas, American Heritage, and Our Lady of Lourdes Academy. Matches were played at St. Thomas Aquinas and Columbia High School. The 2021 event will be held at St. Thomas Aquinas with teams from Lourdes, Archbishop McCarthy, St. Thomas Aquinas, and Nolan Catholic.