Advertisement

Editorial: Thumbs up to Carroll sports teams, new spot at TownMall, first responders being honored

Editorial: Thumbs up to Carroll sports teams, new spot at TownMall, first responders being honored
South Carroll teammates, from left, Caelin Stromberg, Courtney Vasquenza and Syd Hill rush across the field to celebrate with fans after their win over Hereford during the Class 2A girls lacrosse state championship game at Paint Branch High School on Tuesday, May 21. (Brian Krista / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Thumbs up: This week, TownMall of Westminster welcoming a promising addition: Battleground Lounge. While it might not be your scene, there are plenty of locals, especially teens and young adults, who will be all over a video game lounge like this. That means another social opportunity — one that gets young people out of their homes and into the same room, playing games they can enjoy together. “The whole lounge idea came about where, let’s get somewhere kids can go at nighttime and stay out of trouble, hang out, get out of their secluded areas where they’re just in their rooms playing or basements playing games,” co-owner Mike Borris told us. It’s a nice pitch. Crucially, the addition also serves as a sign of hope for the mall. Gamers coming out to a tournament at the new space on a Friday evening will want to get something to eat, and they can around the corner; parents might want to pick something up, or even browse, while they let their kids have fun. We’re glad to see mall management pursuing a smart new addition like this.

Thumbs up: This week, first responders got to enjoy a great deal of appreciation for the lifesaving work they do to help people battling addiction in Carroll County. At the second annual First Responders Appreciation Dinner, members of the community who are in recovery took the opportunity to thank first responders in the audience who had saved their lives by administering naloxone, which can reverse an opioid overdose. The opioid epidemic is still far from quelled, so the importance of this service can’t be overstated. It’s easy to ignore the emotional toll that this line of work can have on responders, so we’re glad to see the brave individuals who work to make sure we can come back from even our worst moments. Lindsey Staymates now spends her time at work and volunteering to help others into long-term recovery, but not too long ago she was in the throes of addiction. “I have purpose in my life today,” she said at the Wednesday dinner. Talk about a positive outcome.

Advertisement

Thumbs down: A grand total of 47 voters turned out for Manchester’s town election this past Tuesday, according to a town spokeswoman. We hope that doesn’t reflect the level of apathy in that town for its local government, but it’s certainly not a good sign. To be sure, this year’s Manchester election featured less intrigue than most — all three candidates were running unopposed. But other municipalities didn’t have that excuse this year. In Westminster’s race for three open Common Council seats, a total of 686 votes were cast, out of 12,026 active and inactive voters — a rate of 5.7%. Sure, the mayor’s office wasn’t on the ballot this year. But there were six candidates, only one of whom was an incumbent, and the race was clearly competitive. In 2015, the most recent Westminster municipal election without a mayoral race, turnout was about 8% — also quite low but not so miserable as this year. Some say that politics at all levels have become nationalized; is it truly the case that elections need national or even state races to interest Carroll County voters? We hope not. It shouldn’t be the case, considering how directly council members and mayors can influence all of our lives. Although Manchester and Westminster stand out at the low end, turnout wasn’t quite so bad across the board — Taneytown saw a rate of nearly 24% turnout, the highest in the county this year. Taneytown, you earned some bragging rights with this one.

Thumbs up: Carroll had four lacrosse teams playing for state championships this week, a feat that wasn’t unprecedented in county history. The result was an accomplishment, however — Carroll earned three titles in the same year for the first time. Westminster’s boys and girls teams repeated as Class 3A state champs, while South Carroll’s girls won the 2A crown. The Owls pulled off their boys-girls sweep for a second year in a row; the Cavaliers earned their first title in program history. Century’s boys reached the 2A state final, the Knights’ first appearance in a title game. The Owls girls were up first at Paint Branch High School and took care of C. Milton Wright, beating the Mustangs 15-9 behind six goals from senior Hannah Dintino. Westminster finished the season 14-6. SC’s girls (16-1) needed overtime to hold off Hereford 10-9 in the 2A final — senior Shannon Finch netted the game winner with 12 seconds to go in the extra period. Westminster’s boys stood tall on defense in the final minute of their finals rematch with Northern and won 9-8, capping a 19-0 season with a second straight state crown. The Owls have won 37 games in a row. All of these teams have much to be proud of, and they’ve represented our county well.

Advertisement
Advertisement