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Maggie's FC adult co-ed soccer team. Top row (L-R): Brad Davis, Steve Bull, Nefta Argueta, Eric Caldwell, Lisa Pennell, Tony Burke. Bottom row: Jessel Hospedales, Jodi Ramsaran, Lindsey Chaffman, Matt Voight, Moriah Morton, Leo DeBandi. Not pictured: Liz Davis, Hunter Hood.
Maggie's FC adult co-ed soccer team. Top row (L-R): Brad Davis, Steve Bull, Nefta Argueta, Eric Caldwell, Lisa Pennell, Tony Burke. Bottom row: Jessel Hospedales, Jodi Ramsaran, Lindsey Chaffman, Matt Voight, Moriah Morton, Leo DeBandi. Not pictured: Liz Davis, Hunter Hood. (Courtesy photo)

Tony Burke, who manages the Maggie's FC adult coed soccer team, says that a team gains confidence when it starts winning, "and after that, you feel you're never going to lose."

In other words, it gains momentum like a snowball rolling downhill, or in some cases, maybe like a soccer ball rolling downhill.

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His statement has held true for the men and women on his Maggie's team since last fall. Over the fall and winter, it has won three straight co-ed soccer championships at Westminster's Carroll Indoor Sports Center.

It beat Hangover United in the Fall Session championship game.

This winter, the Predators have battled Maggie's to the wire in two sessions. But Maggie's has gotten there first both times. Most recently, it edged the Predators 3-2 in the Adult Unlimited Coed league's Winter Session II championship game of March 22.

The Predators, who come mostly from the Westminster area and North Carroll communities. have been around in one form or another for about 15 years. Manager Chris Frech noted that they've won some indoor titles in the past, the last one coming about two years ago.

Maggie's has been together, "in bits and pieces for about three or four years," manager Chris Burke said. But the present iteration has been around only two years. Some players come from the North Carroll area but others come from a scattering of other places including Hanover, Harford County, and Owings Mills.

Both squads were formed in basically the same manner. The players met while playing pickup soccer and decided to form teams.

The Predators enjoyed their only success against Maggie's in Winter Session I which ran from mid-November to Jan.12.

They were 6-0-1 and finished a regular season first in the Adult Coed Red Division. The Predators tied Maggie's in the session's opening match and then beat it in the last regular-season game.

But Maggie's came back to edge the Predators 4-3 in overtime in January's Session I championship game.

Maggie's would get its only other loss of the winter out of the way quickly in Session II. It lost to More Cowbells 5-2 on Jan. 19 in the Adult Open A Division's opening weekend. But that was it for the loss department.

In late January, Maggie's beat the Predators 8-6.

"They led most of the game, but we came back. We were down by three or four goals and we rallied, but we just fell a little short," Frech said.

However, his team won its next five games, sometimes by lopsided scores. And, the Predators would lead the division in scoring during the regular season, hitting the net 53 times. More Cowbell was next with 49.

Maggie's scored only 28 goals in the session, one of the lowest outputs in the eight-team loop.

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But they say that defense wins championships and Maggie's, the winner in both regular and postseason, allowed but 16, easily the lowest number in the league.

Maggie's also finished 6-1 and was awarded first place over the Predators because of its earlier win over them.

The two met for the championship in March. Like their previous championship clash, this one went into overtime. This time, the two antagonists were locked in a 2-2 tie.

The Predators almost broke that deadlock in the overtime's opening moments.

"We had a chance to score in the first 30 seconds, but we missed. Then they came back and connected," Frech said.

Burke described his team's winning play.

"One of our younger guys gave on a give and go to a female player up top. She shot and it ricocheted off the wall to another guy who hit it," Burke said.

Burke credited his team's successes to its balance and depth.

"We have the right combination of talent on both defense and offense. We have smart players and a good mixture of youth and experience," said the 32 year-old resident of the North Carroll area.

He said that his team, "will take off all summer and rest our bodies. Then we'll come back in the fall."

The rest of the Carroll Indoor's adult co-ed teams can probably wait.



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