Results: 1. Chesapeake, 122.8; 2. Broadneck, 120.6; 3. Arundel, 119.2; 4. Oakland Mills, 109.4; 5. Northeast, 103.3; 6. Long Reach, 102; 7. Marriotts Ridge, 101.8; 8. River Hill, 96.8; 9. South River, 93; 10. Old Mill, 91.6; 11. Glen Burnie, 91.4; 12. Mt. Hebron, 88.9; 13. Severna Park, 87.5; 14. Glenelg, 85.8; 15. Howard, 78.6; 16. Centennial, 75.7; 17. Hammond, 72.6; 18. Atholton, 68.3; 19. North County, 53.1.
Atholton's strength was right down the middle of the field. Center midfielder Mollie Belson was the team's MVP, setting the pace on offense and always around the ball.
The team "thrived on her energy," said coach Chris Karlheim.
Karlheim kept team statistics — turnovers, steals, goals and assists and created a turnover to steals ratio. Belson had 48 turnovers, 183 steals, four goals and two assists for a turnover-steal ratio of 135. Her total steals and t/s ratio were team highs.
Gina D'Asto was Atholton's defensive mid and later its second center mid. While not the most vocal player from day one, by the end of the season, she commanded wherever she was. Her stats included 37 turnovers, 130 steals and one assist and she alternated taking free hits with Belson.
Team captain and sweeper Diane D'Costa was in charge of shaping Atholton's defense. "Our theory was to start building from the back and start the offense from hostile defensive pressure," Karlheim said.
D'Asto and D'Costa were accompanied by Kaitlyn Quinn, Monica Cabot, Dainelle Gelb and Carly Matz. They had a combined t/s ratio of +200.
On the offensive side, Haley Kantor (five goals, six assists) was Atholton's points leader. She was followed by Matz (four goals, two assists) and Sami Belsky (four goals). Other standouts were Janie Freedman, Marisa Belsky and Sarah Batascky.
Emily Clinch (35 saves) and Anya Gipsov (10 saves) split time in the goal until a freak accident wiped out Gipsov with a concussion. "With the authority of both goalkeepers and our defensive presence we were able to (give up) less shots," Karlheim said.
"We started strong by shutting out Glen Burnie, 12-0, and Hammond, 6-0. To see the joy on the faces of our players was the most memorable moment for us," the coach said. "They battled in every game, reassuring everyone in the county that Atholton field hockey was something to be both respected and feared."
The Raiders finished the season 5-5-2 and 4-5-2 in county play.
Glenelg Country School's season was shortened due to the fact that two of the schools in its half of the conference didn't field a JV field hockey team. That cost the Dragons (0-5-1 conference, 2-7-1 overall) four games on their schedule.
"It was a building year, but we had a young and eager team," said coach Nic Netzel.
There were 13 freshmen and five sophomores on the team. Freshmen Tessa More and Carmen Zheng led the squad in scoring but the main leadership came from sophomores Kelly Johnson (goalie), Gillie Lynch (D/M), Justine Woolman (M) and Abby Weinstein (M/A), all of whom were called up to varsity for the playoffs.
Despite a much smaller squad this year, Howard JV field hockey persevered and had an outstanding season, finishing the regular season 7-2-2. Taylor Motley and Cailey Tolson held together the midfield. The team was led in scoring by Hannah Faulkner, Taylor Motley and Jessie Heinrich. The defense, led by Sarah Wendt and goalie Alli Jakubek, had five shutouts.
Suki Sandhu (six goals) and Lillie Miller (five goals, three assists) were the leading scorers on the Long Reach team that went 2-7-2 in county play and 3-3-2 overall. Sandhu was the Lightning's most improved player; Miller was a team captain along with Nicole Cote and Blair Jackson.
Miller started at left midfield, "a challenging position Lillie made look easy," said coach Melissa Chen. "She's definitely a player to watch."
A first-year player, Cote brought a strong field sense and athletic ability to the field. She could play any position from attack to defense. "Nicole was easy to coach, which accelerated her talent and presence on the field," Chen said.
Right midfielder Patricia Anderson's drive to succeed always fired up her team. "During halftime or huddles, Patricia would analyze the game in order to seek improvement," Chen said.