Athlete of the Year

Alice Rowe, right, of Lansdowne High, was a standout on the lacrosse field for three years and was named Arbutus Times Athlete of the Year after playing three sports as a senior. (Nate Pesce / Patuxent Publishing / March 19, 2013)

Lansdowne High Athletic Director and former girls lacrosse coach Todd Hawkins knew he had a quality athlete at the school when Alice Rowe was a freshman.

Hawkins helped Rowe blossom on the lacrosse field to the point where she was recruited by some Division I schools during her junior year.

But, Rowe, the Arbutus Times Athlete of the Year, didn’t just stand out on the lacrosse field.

She was also a valuable goalie on the soccer pitch and versatile contributor on the basketball court.

She had never played lacrosse before when Hawkins told her freshman year, “This is your sport.”
The fact she was naturally left-handed also helped her make instant progress.

“People are not used to defending left-handers,” said Rowe, who instantly fell in love with the sport.

She made varsity as a sophomore and played three seasons in the midfield where she was the team’s leading scorer.

Under Hawkins’ guidance junior year, the Vikings finished .500 and Rowe led the team with 44 goals.

She scored 10 goals in a 24-16 loss to Parkville and had eight goals in a victory over Chesapeake.
“She had to do it all and she did it all,” Hawkins said.

Rowe also picked up the mental aspects of the game.

“She was definitely a cerebral player and her junior year was amazing,” Hawkins said. “I ran everything through her and teams would come after her with double and triple teams.”

Her efforts during her junior year drew interest from Colorado and Syracuse universities and she took an official visit to Colorado, which is starting a lacrosse program next spring.

Rowe decided to stay closer to home and plans to attend Stevenson University in the fall.

She represented Lansdowne at the Maryland Leadership Conference last fall and left a lasting impression on Hawkins, who didn’t coach the lacrosse team during her senior year.

“She was very easy to coach,” Hawkins said. “She listened to every word I had to say and didn’t give me any attitude.”

Although the Vikings struggled on the lacrosse field this past spring, Rowe did score over 30 goals and had a season-high nine goals in a loss to Kenwood.

“Everyone on our team worked 100 percent,” Rowe said.

The soccer team also struggled to win games, but Rowe was a valuable asset in goal.

“Between 9th and 10th grade she decided she wanted to play goalie and she never played soccer before so she spent all summer practicing to be a goalie,” soccer coach Daniel Alburger said. “She showed up the first day of practice her sophomore year as a fearless goalie.”

“I could not kick a soccer ball to save a life, but it helped me a lot for my coordination for basketball and I loved it,” Rowe said. “It was like playing catch.”

Alburger didn’t doubt that she could handle the position.

“She is a really good athlete and I think that served her really well,” Alburger said.

A tougher schedule produced only one win on the soccer field, but Rowe maintained a positive attitude.

“We lost a lot of games this year, but she kept them closer,” Alburger said. “She was positive and was helpful to the team and she was a really great leader. She worked hard and played hard, but natural talent only got her so far, but she was willing to put in the hours to make herself a better player.”

On the basketball court she made the team better because of her versatility.

She was the third leading scorer and was second on the team in rebounds, assists and steals.

During a loss to Owings Mills, Rowe’s hustle was key in cutting an 18-point deficit to nine.

Her blocked shot of leading scorer was one of the most memorable sparks to the comeback and prompted her coach, Erin Fortney, to say after the game, “She will be sorely missed next year.”