xml:space="preserve">
xml:space="preserve">
Advertisement
Advertisement

Boys Soccer Player of the Year: Lipsky became leader of the Lions

Liberty senior Sam Lipsky flashed an all-around game to help lead the Lions to a county title. He also led the county in scoring and is the Times' Boys Soccer Player of the Year.
Liberty senior Sam Lipsky flashed an all-around game to help lead the Lions to a county title. He also led the county in scoring and is the Times' Boys Soccer Player of the Year. (DAVE MUNCH/TIMES PHOTO ILLUSTRATION , Carroll County Times)

China Dragon is a popular place to eat in Eldersburg, but there were certain times during the soccer season when diners might've endured short waits while food on the buffet was replenished.

Sam Lipsky and most of the Liberty boys soccer team have established a tradition.

Advertisement

"We have this thing called buffet day," Lipsky said, "and we will go to a local Chinese restaurant, probably about 10 of us and we do it every weekend. It's really fun."

During the summer months, the boys adopt their version of football two-a-days and take the buffet eating style to a new level.

Advertisement
Advertisement

"We like to check out restaurants that have buffets," teammate Ryan Dillon said. "Usually on Wednesday after we train in the morning, we go and do a buffet and that was always fun. We called it Buffet Wednesday."

Lipsky feasted on opposing defenses as if they were items on a buffet en route to being named Times Boys Soccer Player of the Year.

Showing a deft touch with the ball at his feet, Lipsky topped all Carroll players with 10 goals and 27 points for the county champion Lions. While most forwards don't tally many assists, Lipsky had seven, showing his abilities as an all-around soccer player.

"It's pretty rare. Normally forwards are very narrow-minded and their only goal is to score, which is their main job," Lions coach Todd Muschik said. "To have a forward that actually looks for an assist is a nice addition to a team."

Advertisement

Lipsky doesn't come from a soccer family. In fact, he didn't really focus on the sport until he got to high school - and even then it took a couple of years.

Playing baseball and basketball, the senior balanced a year-round schedule between three sports until his sophomore year, when he had an epiphany.

"I remember he played very serious baseball as a sophomore and we were driving to a tournament," his father, Larry Lipsky recalled. "He was excited to play, but he was upset he was missing a soccer game. After that he got together with his club team and realized he wanted to start playing soccer exclusively."

It didn't take long for Lipsky to excel at soccer after committing fully to it.

He was a Times first-team all-countian as a junior and early this season it became clear opposing defenses were going out of their way to deny him the ball.

Calm and laid-back off the field, Lipsky takes on a different personality once he takes the pitch - he becomes a leader.

"I look up to him," Dillon said. "He's not afraid to speak his mind. He'll tell you, 'Hey, you gotta step it up.'"

Added Muschik: "He knows the game [and] he tells it as he sees it."

Larry Lipsky said he never viewed his son as a field general until Sam Lipsky began playing high school sports. He captained his junior varsity baseball and basketball teams and continued that in soccer.

"Outside of sports he's more of a laid-back guy," Larry Lipsky said. "On the field he wants to lead."

Lipsky may be laid-back off the field, but that doesn't mean he avoids competition. In fact, the weekend hangouts that start at China Dragon usually end in some form of competition.

Several of the boys have ping-pong tables and Dillon said tournaments are usually on the agenda. While Dillon said Eric Melinger and Kyle Hawkins are the best ping-pong players, it isn't as clear-cut who claims the title when playing the video game "FIFA."

"That is highly controversial," Dillon said. "I'm going to have to put Sam or Jason Wolf on top, but it's really close."

Now that soccer has ended, Lipsky has decided to try his hand at indoor track and field while he evaluates his future.

College plans are still formulating, but he said he likes a mix of different schools, including the University of Maryland and McDaniel College. Lipsky is still deciding if he wants to go to a smaller school and play for the soccer team, or attend a larger school and play club soccer.

Former Liberty star Shane McCracken has excelled for the Green Terror and former Liberty player Paul Seegren is an assistant coach.

"If I go there that is going to be a big reason why," Lipsky said. "Me and Shane had a connection our sophomore year on the field. If I go there he will be one of the determining factors."

Wherever he ends up, he'll likely be an asset for any team he plays - not to mention any nearby buffet restaurants.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement