The sports world enjoyed a return to full action after the pandemic and the Catonsville-Arbutus Times followed some of those memorable events with a look back at several of the highlights from 2022.
Western Tech girls basketball extends streak over Catonsville
Two girls basketball teams riding winning streaks met at Catonsville and Western Tech made sure early its streak continued as the Wolverines raced to a quick lead and were never threatened in a 51-34 victory.
The Wolverines opened the game on a 10-1 run and extended their hot streak to seven games, while the Comets’ streak ended at nine.
Senior Destini Ward, who now plays at St. Francis (Pa.), led the Wolverines with 20 points. Junior Danielle Weeks added 14 for the winners. Ashley Dickey led the Comets with 17 points.
Emma Wallace wins one for Mount de Sales basketball
Mount de Sales senior Emma Wallace drove down the middle of the lane and hit a 10-foot bank shot with four seconds left to give the host Sailors a 58-57 victory over St. Mary’s in early January.
Wallace finished with 13 points and six rebounds, and her coach was glad to see her take the clutch shot. “We’ve said you’ve got to be more of a glory seeker, stop passing the ball, shoot it,” Mount de Sales coach Trish Armstrong said.
Catonsville wrestling wins dual meet playoff on senior night
The Catonsville wrestling team enjoyed a 57-18 victory over Dundalk in the Class 4A North Region duals on senior night.
Before the match, Catonsville seniors Brandon Bowers, Devin Boger, Josh Sampson, Chastino Robinson, Jesse Hanna, Tomas Grap, Eric Grap, Abdu Chandia, Rafael Zelidon, Sean O’Toole and Luke Pittman were recognized.
Seven of the seniors took the mat, five of them victorious.
Sampson’s 16-14 overtime victory over Kaio Calisto at 138 pounds was the evening’s highlight. Sampson trailed 7-1 with 23 seconds left in the first period and was nearly pinned multiple times.
“It’s my senior night and you can’t lose on your senior night,” Sampson said. “I didn’t think I was going to go on my back at all.”
Former Comet Jasmine Dickey scores 52 points for Delaware University
In a 103-79 win over College of Charleston, Delaware University’s Jasmine Dickey exploded for a career-high 52 points, making 18 of 33 shots and 3 of 5 3-pointers as well as 13 of 14 free-throw attempts. The Catonsville graduate, who led the Comets to the 2017 state title, tied her career-best with 18 rebounds to go with four assists, three steals and a block.
“The basket just seemed wide-open and everything was going in,” said Dickey, who also had 48 points in a game earlier in the season. “My teammates gave me the opportunity to score, they gave me the ball because I was hot and I just continued that, it was fun.”
She won back-to-back Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year awards and graduated as the program’s No. 2 career scorer. She was drafted by the WNBA’s Dallas Wings and will begin her second season in 2023.
Gaels wins MIAA wrestling title
Mount Saint Joseph sent nine wrestlers to the championship finals and produced five champions while cruising to the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association title.
The No. 1 Gaels finished with 303.5 points in claiming their fifth MIAA title in the past six seasons.
Carter Nogle (113), Jacob Wright (132), Bryce Phillips (182), Spencer Toth (195) and Gavin Bage (285) all reached the top of the podium, with Phillips earning a pin.
Maiden Choice hosts bocce ball against Catonsville
The Catonsville bocce ball team traveled to the Maiden Choice school for an inaugural event.
“This is their first interscholastic game so it’s pretty neat,” said Brad Kressman, who heads the Allied Sports programs for Baltimore County Athletics.
There are currently 16 Baltimore County teams with allied bocce teams and Catonsville coach Alicia Brady was thrilled to be the first to play at Maiden Choice.
“When Maiden Choice asked us to play it wasn’t even a question, we were like, we need to be here for this event. We were honored to be here and that they even asked us,” Brady said. “We came to compete, but we were here to engage and interact with another school in our community. I think that’s really important to get out and meet other peers besides just the ones in our school.”
Charles Rawls, Dayvon Marshall and Tony Nguyen were three of the standouts for the Maiden Choice squad, nicknamed the Manatees.
Catonsville boys basketball defeats Century
Catonsville point guard Brian Ruppel knew his defensive assignment was going to be tough when the Comets hosted Century and Carroll County’s leading scorer Andrew Marcinko. But the senior didn’t let it affect his offensive game down the stretch as he scored the Comets’ final eight points in the last 1:34 to help hold off the Carroll County champions, 63-55.
The Comets led 54-53 when Ruppel took over offensively, driving the lane for a layup and three-point lead. He added four free throws in the final 23 seconds and all the Knights could muster in the waning minutes was a pair of free throws by John Pavlick.
Western Tech girls wrestlers excel at state tournament
While no boys from Catonsville, Western Tech or Lansdowne made the top six at the MPSSAA state wrestling tournament, the Western Tech girls produced a pair of podium finishes in Mame Thiam (third) and Leian Wright (sixth) in the girls competition.
Thiam, a state champ in 2020 as a freshman, won her 190-pound bronze-medal match by pinning Stephen Decatur’s Mia Stubblebine with 20 seconds left in the opening period.
Thiam, Wright (125), Thein Thein (110) and Lilaah Jones (105) were regional champions for the Wolverines.
Hallie Shepard, Myla Abernathy blaze to glory on track
Hallie Shepard runs for Catonsville track and cross country coach Sandra Gallagher-Mohler’s IRunTons in the offseason and, after Catonsville’s indoor track season ended, she went to Virginia Beach and won the 1,500 and 3,000 meter elite races in the 17-18 age division at the AAU Indoor Nationals.
“I knew she had some faster times within her that we hadn’t seen, it was just getting it all together at the right time and it came together beautifully,” Gallagher-Mohler said.
The same weekend Shepard was in Virginia Beach, Myla Abernathy was at The Armory in New York for the New Balance Nationals. In the Rising Stars division, Abernathy finished fifth in the 800 in a personal record time of 2:16.69.
Former Catonsville state champion coach returns to lacrosse field
Arundel girls lacrosse coach Kim McNemar admittedly felt sentimental walking to the lacrosse field to play Catonsville. She was the coach when the Comets won their only girls lacrosse state championship in 1996.
But, on this day, her Wildcats were taking on the Comets, now coached by McNemar’s friend, Cantey Bailey. It’s the second time she has played Catonsville and the second time Arundel fell short.
The Comets got five goals from Milena Stephen, four goals and two assists from Casey Fisher and three goals from Adele Jones in the 13-10 victory.
Catonsville lacrosse nips Mount St. Joseph
Catonsville senior Frank Manalansan scored the game-winning goal with 7:28 left in the fourth quarter and the host Comets held on for a 9-8 victory over Mount Saint Joseph that moved them to 10-0.
It was the only goal of the game for Manalansan and it came off the third assist for Byron Newman, who added a goal in the win between schools separated by less than 4 miles. Newman found Manalansan alone at the top of the crease, and the senior buried the shot before Catonsville’s defense held on for the win.
“Frank just has a knack for getting open near the crease,” Newman said. “Me and him have played together for countless years, so we’ve got a really good chemistry together and he has amazing hands and size and amazing finishing ability.”
Maggie Kreis leads Catonsville softball to Baltimore County title
Catonsville senior Maggie Kreis went 3-for-4 with two doubles and three RBIs, and she pitched a complete game with 11 strikeouts as the Comets defeated Carver A&T, 7-3, in the Baltimore County championship game at CCBC-Catonsville.
The two teams split during the regular season with Catonsville winning, 2-1, on April 19 and Carver blanking the Comets, 6-0, on April 28.
In the county title game, the Comets built a 7-0 lead in the first four innings and Carver rallied late with three runs in the final two innings. Kreis allowed only one hit in the first five innings, twice striking out the side.
“She was pitching really, really good today,” Catonsville senior catcher Caelyn Voss said. “Her curve was working really good, a lot of people were going for the rise and it worked out a lot with that.”
Catonsville boys lacrosse wins county championship in thriller
Catonsville senior Byron Newman scored the game-winning goal with 13.3 seconds left in the fourth quarter to give the unbeaten Comets an 8-7 victory over Hereford in the Baltimore County championship game held at Catonsville.
Newman, who scored the Comets’ first three goals, came from behind the crease and took the shot while being double-teamed.
“I saw 15 on the clock and I thought I was going to get a step on him with my left hand because he’s a lefty defender and we had been battling it out all day, I was just like ‘I’ve got to take it to the rack.’” Newman said. “I kind of got collapsed on and I protected my stick and luckily I held onto it and sneaked it in.”
Grace Bielski leads Catonsville softball to state semifinals
Catonsville senior Grace Bielski spent the day before the Comets’ Class 4A state quarterfinal game against Urbana hitting the ball to the opposite field. Her work paid off in the bottom of the third inning when Bielski belted a two-run double to give the host Comets a lead they would never relinquish in a 4-1 triumph over the Hawks.
“I realized I had two people on base and I was just trying to do my job to get them across the plate and it was just adrenaline and luck that took me that way,” Bielski said.
Western Tech wins outdoor state track title
Senior Laila Gaynor was the lone repeat individual state champion at the Class 1A outdoor state championships, winning the 400 meters in 57.11 seconds, .64 faster than last year.
Senior Samara Jones produced the most points for the ladies juggernaut as she finished second in the 200 meters (25.8) and triple jump (36-9¼) and third in the 100 (12.57).
It was the second straight state title for the Wolverines who finished with 81 points, leading second-place Largo (66) in the meet held at the Prince George’s Sports and Learning Complex.
Western Tech rallies past Lansdowne girls soccer
Western Tech erased a one-goal deficit with a pair of goals in the second half in a 2-1 victory over host Lansdowne in girls soccer.
With 10:24 left in the second half, Western Tech earned the game-winning goal as Lucia Lee broke open on a fast break. The play was set up by a pass at midfield from freshman Rebekah Harmer. She sent it to freshman Suzie Metcalf and Lee finished an attempted clear by the Vikings.
“It was just running,” Lee said. “Coach would say cherry-picking, so my brain was just cherry-picking, sprinting above her and just took a shot.”
Catonsville back Tyler Boyd rushes for 200 yards twice
Catonsville sophomore running back Tyler Boyd rushed for more than 200 yards for the second straight game and the host Comets rolled to a 41-6 victory over Towson on homecoming.
The week before, Boyd rushed for 235 yards on 17 carries but the Comets lost to Dulaney, 22-12, thanks in part to committing four turnovers. Against Towson, he rushed for 221 yards on 18 carries and scored two touchdowns and the Comets did not commit a turnover.
On the Comets’ second play of the night, Boyd took a pitch from quarterback Gunnar Gemmell and raced 75 yards down the left sideline for a touchdown.
Western Tech rushes past Lansdowne football
Western Tech coach Shawn Waller knew what he had to do to help his team get its first victory after four straight losses: get the ball to his playmakers.
And that’s exactly what he did for most of the night, as senior quarterback Chris Dancy had 17 carries for 171 yards and scored on a 46-yard run and junior running back Omari Sheppard added 20 carries for 103 yards and two touchdowns in Western Tech’s 26-12 victory over neighboring rival Lansdowne at CCBC-Catonsville.
Catonsville’s Matt Barth makes hole-in-one at county tournament
Matt Barth played only one season of golf at Catonsville, but he ended it in thrilling fashion with the senior making a hole-in-one in his final competition.
His dad, Wayne, watched the ace on the par-3 fifth hole at Diamond Ridge go in from 183 yards at the Baltimore County championships on Oct. 17, but neither Matt or his grandfather, Bob, didn’t see the ball drop.
“It was pretty amazing,” Wayne said. “I told my son he had something in common with his grandfather, both of them had hole-in-ones and neither of them saw it go in. It probably landed about 10 feet short and it rolled up toward the hole, and it looked like it was going in and I actually thought for a second it missed, and then it went past and then it disappeared.”
Matt didn’t soak up the moment until he saw a teammate’s reaction.
“It was just raining so I couldn’t really see out of my glasses,” said Matt, who handed his glasses to his dad to wipe dry while he hit the shot. “My teammate [Harrison Dean] screamed that it went in and then everyone else said that it went in. It was crazy. The next drive didn’t go so great, but it was just awesome, the first hole-in-one.”
Catonsville soccer wins overtime playoff thriller
Catonsville senior tri-captain Bryan Barrientos scored his second penalty kick with 3:27 left in the first overtime to give the fourth-seeded Comets a 4-3 victory over fifth-seeded Perry Hall in the Class 4A North Region I quarterfinals.
Barrientos ended the night after he drew a foul in the box following a cross from Emmanuel Amoako. He drilled the kick low and inside the post to the keeper’s left.
“To do it twice is just amazing,” Barrientos said. “I’m not going to lie, there is a lot of pressure, you’ve just got to take a deep breath and I had God on my side and I prayed before taking both and he helped me.”
Lansdowne volleyball wins playoff game
Lansdowne advanced to the second round of the regional playoffs for the first time since Sarah Curran took over the program seven seasons ago. The Vikings rode an aggressive serving effort and timely hitting to a 3-1 victory over visiting Owings Mills in the first round of the Class 2A North Region II playoffs, 25-17, 25-9, 24-26, 25-17.
Senior Kaia Montgomery led the Vikings with 10 aces and sophomore Morgan Mallard added eight aces and a match-high 12 kills.
“We might have won one game last year,” Curran said. “It’s been really nice, I think I’ve taken it for granted the fact that I’ve seen such a progression and sometimes I know I’m definitely harder on them because I know I want more and I forget to congratulate them for the things they are doing right, right now.”
Catonsville basketball wins first for coaching alum
In his first game as varsity coach at his alma mater, Catonsville coach Jason Harris watched his Comets race to a big lead in the first quarter and never look back in a dominant 84-16 victory over visiting Sparrows Point.
The former Comet guard watched 10 different players score, led by senior guard Nic Brogdon, who scored a game-high 19 points, including 16 in the first quarter.
“Obviously, it’s my first game as varsity head coach. I was a little anxious,” Harris said. “I had the jitters a little bit, but I wanted to emphasize to the team that we have to make a statement from the first game, so we can build off some momentum to move forward for the rest of the season.”
Mount Saint Joseph beats top team in the country
The Morning Sun
A chance to play in Hawaii over winter break is special enough for a high school basketball team. But how about knocking off the country’s No. 1 ranked team, too? Mount Saint Joseph did just that, claiming a 56-55 win over Florida power Montverde Academy.
The Gaels rallied from an early double-digit deficit to beat the Eagles, who are ranked No. 1 nationally by MaxPreps.
The Gaels, defending Baltimore Catholic League and Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference champions, leaned on their senior leaders to pull off the upset in the semifinal.
Forward Amani Hansberry scored a team-high 15 points with good work on the boards. Guard Austin Abrams hit three 3-pointers to finish with 14 points. And fellow guard Ace Valentine added 10 points. Junior Tyonne Farrell came up big in the second half, scoring all nine of his points after intermission.
“Just a gritty team effort against a tremendous opponent. We got down early and Austin hit a couple shots to kind of weather the storm, and after that it was kind of nip and tuck,” Mount Saint Joseph coach Pat Clatchey said.
After beating Monteverde, the Gaels lost to Philadelphia-power Neumann-Goretti in the championship game, 76-72.
Senior forward Hansberry was named the Most Outstanding Player with teammates Abrams and Farrell claiming all-tournament honors.