For Glenelg, winning lacrosse games is just like riding a bike.
It had been 717 days since Glenelg’s last game — a win over Century in the 2A state championship — and the Gladiators opened their COVID-shortened season Friday with another triumph. Glenelg’s Colin Buch, Rocco Buscher and Evan Whatley all scored four or more goals in the Gladiators’ commanding 15-11 win over Centennial.
“They’re still hungry,” said Glenelg head coach Josh Hatmaker. “A lot of those kids were on that team, starting or getting minutes. They’ve been waiting for this. The motivation has been there.”
Buch led Glenelg with five goals, while Buscher and Whatley each scored four. Buch, a senior, said it “felt amazing” to be back on the field in the black and red after being a contributor off the bench for that 2019 team.
“We’ve been working hard in the offseason. It felt good that all the hard work has paid off,” he said. “To finally get out here after 700 days and get a win feels amazing. This is a good start to the season, and we have to keep building on it.”
It was clear in the first few minutes on a rainy night at Centennial’s Angelo Fortunato Memorial Stadium that Glenelg (1-0) was excited for the start of the season. The Gladiators darted out to a 4-0 lead in the first four minutes on two goals from Whatley and one apiece from Buscher and Buch.
“We want to be aggressive from the get-go, and we have the tools to do that,” Hatmaker said. “It helps to get out to a big jump. I think we also did a great job at the X tonight, which is a big help too.”
“We wanted to come out and set the tone,” Buch said.
Centennial’s Josh Flick then broke the Gladiators’ run with a goal to get the Eagles on the board.
Flick, a junior, was the game’s leading scorer, finding the back of the net seven times — once in each of the first three quarters and four times in the final period, including a streak of three straight goals in a three-minute span.
“I’ve been coaching for 27 years, and you don’t see games like that often,” said Centennial head coach Ken Senisi, who coached in his first game at the helm of the Eagles’ program Friday. “He’s got a really good IQ, and he’s very quick.”
The Gladiators and Eagles went back and forth for the remainder of the game, but Centennial (0-1) never got closer than three goals. That wasn’t without trying from the Eagles, though, as Senisi’s squad remained engaged and had momentum-shifting moments in the final three quarters.
After Glenelg’s 4-0 lead, the two squads played to an 11-11 tie.
“We played hard,” Senisi said. “That’s a very good, experienced team. Our seniors really fought us through that. We could’ve just given up, but we didn’t. We bounced back well from going down 4-0, and that shows the character our guys have.”
After scoring three goals in four minutes in the second quarter — off the sticks of Brendan Hlibok, Cameron Westlake and Flick — the Eagles were down only 7-4 with 1:17 remaining in the first half. However, a goal from Buscher 30 seconds later gave the Gladiators a boost heading into halftime.
“We’re a senior-heavy team, and they don’t lose their composure very often,” Hatmaker said. “I lean on those seniors, and it doesn’t surprise me at all that they didn’t fold.”
“A lot of it comes down to leadership,” Buch said. “We had great leadership in 2019, so we wanted to carry that into this season and bring along the younger guys.”
Glenelg then outscored Centennial 4-2 in the third period to lead by six, including two goals from sophomore Nick Dalton in his first varsity game and a key goal from Buch that stymied another Centennial run. The Eagles had scored two straight goals to pull within 10-6 when Buch caught a sharp pass from freshman Chris Iannarino and found the back of the net.
Hatmaker said Buch was poised for a breakout junior campaign before the coronavirus shut down the season. Pairing him with Whatley and Kevin Doughty, who calmly directed the Gladiators’ attack with four assists, Hatmaker believes, will be tough to defend.
“We knew from Day 1 last year. He looked like a different animal,” Hatmaker said. “Then when you put him there with Kevin and Whatley, they work so well as a unit.”
Then, midway through the fourth, the Gladiators increased their advantage to seven goals before Flick’s impressive stretch of three scores in three minutes.
Both teams are back in action Monday. Glenelg travels to Mt. Hebron, while Centennial hosts River Hill.
Glenelg 15, Centennial 11
Goals: G — Colin Buch 5, Rocco Buscher 4, Evan Whatley 4, Nick Dalton 2; C — Joshua Flick 7, Brendan Hlibok 2, Cameron Westlake, Andrew Hockersmith.
Assists: G — Kevin Doughty 4, Jon Nagle 3, Chris Iannarino, Buch, Whatley; C — Hockersmith 3, Jake Ritter.
Saves: G — Charlie Wendel 11; C — Alex Kauffman 10.
Halftime: 8-4, G.
OTHER BOYS LACROSSE SCORES:
Marriotts Ridge 10, Mt. Hebron 7
After a low-scoring first half for both teams, the Mustangs (1-0) scored seven times after intermission to defeat the Vikings (0-1) on opening night. Charlie Reynolds scored four goals to lead Marriotts Ridge, while Gianni Karam had four goals of his own for Mt. Hebron
Goals: MR — Reynolds 4, Kennedy 2, Miller 2, Levey, Kelley; MH — Karam 4, Fleck, Machiran, Demek.
Assists: MR — Levey, Schutty, Gloyd, Kennedy; MH — Demek, Tangires, Ryan, Machiran.
Saves: MR — Coakley 6, Gladstone 6; MH — Covert 8, Armstead 4.
Halftime: 3-2, MR.
Howard 9, River Hill 7
The Lions (1-0) held off the Hawks (0-1) behind a balanced attack that saw four players score two or more goals. Max Bruno led the way with three scores, while Nathan Boone, Aiden Larsen and Braden Zehring had two apiece. Howard’s Gavin Smith had two assists, while goalie Logan Boone had 7 saves.
Jack Burns had a game-high four goals, along with an assist, for River Hill in the losing effort.
Goals: Ho — M. Bruno 3, N. Boone 2, A. Larsen 2, B. Zehring 2; RH — J. Burns 4, D. Campbell, T. Sutch, J. Davis.
Assists: Ho — G. Smith 2, M. Baur, A. Larsen; RH — W. Brunett, J. Burns, J. McCormick.
Saves: Ho — L. Boone 7; RH — K. Henry 12.
Halftime: 5-2, Ho.
Reservoir 21, Oakland Mills 5
The Gators (1-0) put together a strong offensive effort, spearheaded by Sean Maruschak (6 goals, 3 assists), Jakota Parker (3 goals and 4 assists) and Joseph Schinner (5 goals, 1 assist), on the way to the convincing opening-night win over the Scorpions (0-1). Reservoir built an 18-0 lead by halftime.
Tyler May led the Oakland Mills offense with three goals and an assist. Michael Clansey made 20 saves for the Scorpions.
Goals: Re — Maruschak 6, Schinner 5, Musser 3, Parker 3, M. Baer 2, Jones, Pazulski; OM — T. May 3, M. Hammond, B. Nguyen.
Assists: Re — Parker 4, Maruschak 3, Jones, M. Baer, Beckett, Schinner, Sisk; OM — T. May.
Saves: Re — Ellinger 6, Hoover 5; OM — M. Clansey 20.
Half: 18-0 Re.
Wilde Lake 17, Long Reach 5
Seniors Michael Stralka, Eric Knoerschild, and Lucas Michael all had hat-tricks in the opening night game against Long Reach. Overall, 10 different players contributed to the scoring in the game for Wilde Lake. Junior defenders Nate Jones, Elijah Queen, and Trey Jenkins all had multiple take-aways and ground balls playing strong defense in front of freshman goalie Lewis Collora.
Elijah McNeil and Nick Roby combined to score all five of the goals for Long Reach.
Goals: WL — Michael Stralka 3, Eric Knoerschild 3, Lucas Michael 3, Quinn Sutker 2, Evan Robinson 1, Rowley Jackson 1, Jack Phelps 1, Henry Hilger 1, Alex Manney 1, Zach Hirsch 1; LR — N/A.
Assists: WL — Jackson 4, Sutker 2, Stralka 2, Hilger 2, Knoerschild 1, Michael 1, Hirsch 1; LR — NA .
Saves: WL — Lewis Collora 4 ; LR — D.J. Belechto 17.
Halftime: 10-2, WL.
Hammond at Atholton, PPD
Glenelg 14, Centennial 0
The Gladiators (1-0) earned the shutout on opening night over the Eagles (0-1) behind a game-high five goals from Emma Kennedy. Molly Metz (2 goals, 3 assists) and Sophie Cipolla (2 goals, assist) also had big offensive days, while goalie Jocelyn Torres made four saves to keep the clean sheet defensively.
Goals: G — Emma Kennedy 5, Molly Metz 2, Sophie Cipolla 2, Isa Torres, Lauren Lapoint, Maura Murphy, Chloe Birkhead, Caitlyn Baehr.
Assists: G — Metz 3, Kennedy, Cipolla, Torres.
Saves: G — Jocelyn Torres 4; C — Ava Welsh 15.
Marriotts Ridge 9, Mt. Hebron 7
The Mustangs (1-0) trailed for a large portion of the season-opening game against the Vikings (0-1), including by a score of 6-4 at the half, before pulling together down the stretch to earn the win.
Maisy Clevenger scored a game-high four goals, while Hayley Lettinga and Maggie Merrill (three assists) had two goals apiece. Mt. Hebron was led by three goals from mulit-goal games from Audrey Harrington (3 goals) Ashley Unkenholz (2) and Jessie Barke (2).
Mt. Hebron also won 13 out of 16 draws.
Goals: MR — M. Clevenger 4, H. Lettinga 2, M. Merrill 2, Huelskamp; MH — A. Harrington 3, A. Unkenholz 2, J. Barke 2.
Assists: MR — Merrill 3, L. Fisher; MH — Barke, M. Pak.
Saves: MR — G. Hejeebu 7; MH — S. Lloyd 5.
Half: 6-4 MH.
Howard 6, River Hill 4
The Lions (1-0) held off a second-half push from the visiting Hawks (0-1) to emerge victorious in the season-opening game for both teams. Howard, which was led by three goals from Madison Anthony, had jumped out to a 4-1 lead at the half to create the separation needed to prevail on a rainy evening.
Claire Slade scored all four of the goals for the Hawks, with Molly Maloney providing assists on two of those scores.
Goals: Ho — M. Anthony 3, E. Wiechert, S. Brothers, A. Lockwood; RH — C. Slade 4.
Assists: Ho — S. Brothers, L. Hume; RH — M. Maloney 2.
Saves: Ho — N/A; RH — Thompson 8.
Halftime: 4-1, Ho.
Reservoir 16, Oakland Mills 4
The Gators (1-0) got big offensive days from Alana Leak (4 goals, assist), Savanna Hill (3 goals, assist), Alex Ripkin (3 goals, assist) and Kat Thayer (2 goals, 4 assists) on the way to the win over the Scorpions (0-1).
Goals: Re — A. Leak 4, S. Hill 3, A. Ripkin 3, K. Thayer 2, T. Sung 2, S. Gray, D. Miller; OM — N/A.
Assists: Re — Thayer 4, Pereira 2, Hill, Leak, Ripkin, Gray, Malwitz.
Saves: Re — Roberts 5, Carranza 1; OM — N/A 3.
Halftime: 12-1 Re.
Wilde Lake 9, Long Reach 5
The Wildecats (1-0) led by just one goal, 5-4, over the Lightning (0-1) at the half before opening things up down the stretch for a season-opening victory. Wilde Lake sophomore Cassie Montgomery led the offensive charge with four goals and an assist in her first high school game, while senior Josie Pittman added two goals, two ground balls and a caused turnover.
Lia Carlesi (goal, assist, 5 draw controls, 3 ground balls) and Abby Churilla (goal, assist, 2 ground balls) also had big games for Wilde Lake in the win.
In the loss, Long Reach was led by Paige Ditter’s three goals.
Goals: WL — C. Montgomery 4, J. Pittman 2, L. Carlesi, A. Churilla, K. Hunter; LR — P. Ditter 3, T. Benefield, C. Vincent.
Assists: WL — Montgomery, Churilla, Carlesi, S. Kline.
Saves: WL — Sweitzer 6; LR — Wehr 8.
Halftime: 5-4, WL.
Glenelg Country 9, Bryn Mawr 5 (IAAM A Conference quarterfinals)
The Dragons (9-3, 11-3) built on an one-goal overtime victory over Bryn Mawr during the regular season, advancing into a conference semifinal matchup against top-seeded St. Paul’s next Tuesday. St. Paul’s (12-1, 13-1) won the matchup against Glenelg Country earlier this spring by a score of 17-6.
On Friday, Glenelg Country opened up a 5-1 lead by halftime and was led offensively by Jaclyn Marszal with game highs of three goals and two assists. Goalie Stephanie Marszal made five saves for the Dragons to hold off any comeback hopes.
Goals: GC — J. Marszal 3, B. Byrne 2, S. Naylor 2, A. Silvestri 1, M. Weisman; BM — M. Watson, C. Smith, J. Brockburn, A. Martin, R. Woodworth.
Assists: GC — J. Marszal 2, S. Naylor 1; BM — C. Smith.
Saves: GC — S. Marszal 5; BM — J. Surano 5.
Halftime: 5-1, GC.
Atholton at Hammond, PPD
Long Reach 3, Oakland Mills 2
The Lightning (1-0) scored a run in each of the fifth and sixth innings to earn the comeback win over the Scorpions (0-1) in a game played under the lights at Blandair Park. JP Tennant earned his first varsity win on the mound, going six innings and allowing two runs while striking out six. He also scored one of Long Reach’s runs after walking and stealing a base.
As a team, the Lightning stole seven bases to maximize their three hits and six walks offensively. Tucker Freer picked up his first varsity save with two strikeouts in one inning of work. Brandon Bartolotta, Conner Bosley and Brendan O’Reilly had the hits for Long Reach.
Oakland Mills got its own strong pitching performance from senior starter Tyler Miles, who struck out nine batters in five innings while giving up just one earned run. Cameron Carter singled in the third inning to give the Scorpions an early 1-0 lead, while Zach Weaver recorded a RBI SAC fly in the fourth to put Oakland Mills up 2-1.
Junior Heath Franklin reached base four times with two hits and two walks for Oakland Mills.
123 456 7 R-H-E
OM — 001 100 0 2-5-4
LR — 001 011 x 3-3-2
Glenelg 18, Wilde Lake 3
The Gladiators (1-0) put together some offensive fireworks in the game moved to the turf at Blandair Park. Alfonse Dello Russo (2-2, double, 3 runs, 3 RBI), Gavin Henley (2-3, double, RBI), Harrison Hobdy (2-3, RBI) and DJ Stolba (2-2, double, 2 runs, RBI) all registered multiple hits, while Andrew Johnson contributed a triple and 3 RBI.
Johnson also added a solid game at pitcher with five strikeouts in two innings on the mound.