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Female Athlete of the Year: Winters Mill's Erin Snyder's 'four fun years' culminated with Times' top honor

Female Athlete of the Year: Winters Mill's Erin Snyder's 'four fun years' culminated with Times' top honor
Becky Martin, left, former McDaniel College women's basketball coach, stands with Female Athlete of the Year Erin Snyder of Winters Mill at the Carroll County Times High School Athlete of the Year Awards banquet June 24, 2019 at Martin's Westminster. (Steve Ruark / For the Carroll County Times)

Erin Snyder followed the same formula this year as she had the previous three when it came to playing sports at Winters Mill High School.

The recent graduate started in August with preseason practice for soccer, rolled right into basketball season in the winter, and didn’t stop until mid-May when lacrosse came to an end. Only then, Snyder said, did she have a little time to reflect.

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And realize her accomplishments.

Snyder received all-county honors in two of her three varsity sports, and earned the Girls Soccer Player of the Year award last fall. Then came another accolade — Snyder left the annual Carroll County Times High School Athlete of the Year Awards banquet with the Female Athlete of the Year hardware.

“It’s definitely starting to settle in that it’s over,” Snyder said at the banquet, which took place June 24 at Martin’s Westminster. “Very sad about it. But I had four fun years. I played 12 [varsity] seasons, so it was a blast.”

Snyder, already a two-time first-team all-county pick in girls soccer, helped Winters Mill win a second straight Carroll County Athletic League title last fall by totaling 18 points. She scored seven goals and added four assists, and netted three game-winning goals against Carroll opponents.

The Falcons went 4-1-1 against CCAL foes, and won the county title Oct. 18 with a 3-2 win over Manchester Valley. WM rallied from a 2-0 deficit, and Snyder scored two goals — she converted a penalty kick with less than 5 minutes remaining for the deciding score.

Snyder finished the fall with a second-team all-state selection by the Maryland Association of Coaches of Soccer. In her three all-county seasons, Snyder tallied a combined 17 goals and 15 assists.

Winters Mill's Erin Snyder moves the ball downfield while pursued by Liberty sophomore Maia Burger during the first half of their game in Eldersburg Thursday, Oct. 25, 2018.
Winters Mill's Erin Snyder moves the ball downfield while pursued by Liberty sophomore Maia Burger during the first half of their game in Eldersburg Thursday, Oct. 25, 2018. (Dylan Slagle / Carroll County Times)

“Watching Erin grow as a soccer player has been fun to watch,” said WM coach Denny Snyder, Erin’s father. “It’s been her total passion over the years. … She’s constantly working at soccer and it’s clearly her No. 1 sport. Having been here and having the opportunity to coach Erin was definitely a new experience.”

Snyder moved into basketball and didn’t miss a beat. She led Winters Mill to a 13-10 record (8-4 CCAL) and finished seventh in the county in scoring at 11.3 points per game. The guard led her team in scoring, rebounds (7.0 per game), assists (3.7, second best in Carroll), and steals (2.2).

Her 41.5 field-goal percentage was fourth best in the county among regular players, and she connected on 31 3-pointers. Snyder also shot 74 percent from the free-throw line — her two foul shots with less than 5 seconds to play gave Winters Mill a 43-42 win Jan. 4 over city rival Westminster.

“I loved basketball. Basketball was so much fun this year,” Snyder said. “Being a senior, being a leader on the team.”

Lacrosse came in the spring, and while the Falcons struggled during the regular season Snyder helped them play in the sectional finals in the playoffs. South Carroll, the eventual Class 2A state champ, knocked WM out in that game, but the Falcons hung with the Cavaliers for most of the game.

Snyder, one of the Falcons’ defenders, collected 24 ground balls and 12 caused turnovers this season. And she said the busy nature of the entire school year didn’t faze her.

“You would go [from] playoffs to missing tryouts, into the next seasons. No, I never got tired of it,” Snyder said. “It was always such a fun opportunity to play with my friends.”

Snyder is getting ready to play women’s soccer at York College this fall, and said she’ll be spending time this summer getting in shape to adjust to the college game. She’ll be looking forward to helping the Spartans and enjoy some wins, but Snyder’s sports experience seems to be about more than just success.

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Snyder listened to former McDaniel College women’s basketball coach Becky Martin, the guest speaker at the Times’ awards banquet, talk about understanding what’s important when balancing sports and life.

“Like [she] was saying, it’s not about wins and losses,” Snyder said. “It’s about the relationships and the journey, that’s what you’ll really remember when you look back on those four years.”

Winters Mill's Erin Snyder releases a successful 3-point shot over the block attempt by Manchester Valley's Amelia Saunders during a girls basketball game at Manchester Valley High School on Feb. 22.
Winters Mill's Erin Snyder releases a successful 3-point shot over the block attempt by Manchester Valley's Amelia Saunders during a girls basketball game at Manchester Valley High School on Feb. 22. (Brian Krista / Carroll County Times)
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