Falcons join U.S. top 10 for now Gophers unlikely to make playoffs despite beating top teams


Let's don't waste any time and get right to those "Q's and A's."

Any response you have, positive or negative, should be called into the 24-Hour Sportsline, 647-2499.

* Do you realize that Glen Burnie's baseball team (7-9) might not make the Class 4A Region IV playoffs even though it has beaten USA Today ninth-ranked and metro area top-ranked Severna Park (15-1) and No. 3 Mount St. Joseph?

The Gophers hammered St. Joe, 15-2, in the Gaels' Easter Tournament, then upset Severna Park, 6-2, Monday. The Falcons had learned before the game they had jumped from No. 13 in the national ratings to No. 9, moving into the top 10 for the first time in school history.

Severna Park's visit to the national top 10 should be short-lived, but while you never really want to lose, didn't Coach Jim Pitt's Falcons relieve themselves of a lot of pressure?

By the way, who is going to land that fourth and final playoff berth in 4A Region IV baseball, Broadneck?

With Severna Park (15-1), Arundel (12-5) and Old Mill (12-5) virtual locks, doesn't Broadneck (11-6), with its 5-0 victory over North County (5-11) Monday, have the inside track over Chesapeake (8-9) and Glen Burnie (7-8)?

But shouldn't we look at who is left on the schedule for those three teams -- Broadneck, Chesapeake and Glen Burnie? Broadneck plays host to defending state 2A champion Northeast (12-5) at 3:45 p.m. today and Arundel Monday, with a visit to Southern (4-10) sandwiched in between on Friday.

Glen Burnie has Annapolis (1-12), Chesapeake and Meade (5-11) left, while Chesapeake of first-year coach Jim Simms appears to have the toughest road of all.

The Cougars have Severna Park at home today and Glen Burnie at home Friday, and they close out the regular season Monday at Old Mill.

* Did you know that Arundel's Brian Rolocut (8-0), who threw back-to-back no-hitters last week, striking out 24 in the two games, now has an even 100 strikeouts in 53 1/3 innings for the Wildcats?

* Also, not that we like to see anyone get suspended, but did you know that Southern baseball coach Chuck Crandell served a one-game suspension for taking his team off the field in the season-opener in Harwood against Arundel back on March 23?

Crandell missed Rolocut's no-hitter at Arundel on April 27. Rolocut no-hit the Dawgs, 7-0, with Crandell serving his one-game suspension.

* What if a batted ball hits that blue press box in center field above the fence at Old Mill High School? Is it a homer or in play?

The fence joins the tall, narrow building that is part of the Old Mill football field, and yes, I could call and get the ground rules, but I was just wondering how many of you know.

Fenway Park has its green monster, so shouldn't we make it Old Mill's blue monster?

* Isn't the baseball future bright at North County (5-11), with junior pitchers Joe York and J. T. Hall, freshman hurler Mike Wooden (who has one of the wins) and a JV that is tied with Arundel (12-4) for the county lead?

The JV Knights of Coach Al Pindell lost three of their games by one run -- 3-2 to Arundel, 1-0 to Glen Burnie and 14-13 to Old Mill -- and by 8-6 to Broadneck this past Monday. Pindell's troops have scored 138 runs in 16 games, and the pitching staff has a cumulative ERA of 1.90.

Matt Lentz, who Pindell calls "the heart and soul, glue of our team," is batting .439 with 15 RBI and is 3-2 pitching with a 2.20 ERA.

Before being moved up to the varsity, sophomore pitcher-outfielder Rob Christopher had an ERA of 1.50 and was batting .704. Also, pitcher-first baseman Justin Godfreid is 3-1 with a 2.20 ERA while hitting .366 with a .422 on-base percentage.

* What's this about Buddy Hepfer retiring as head football coach at Arundel? Hepfer, whose career record is 93-61, was 70-24 his first nine seasons and 23-37 his last six (1986-1991).

Would ex-Arundel High football player and assistant coach Jeff Herrick, who just completed his third season as head coach at Broadneck, be interested in returning to his alma mater?

* With Broadneck losing a second straight McMullen brother (Kevin) as an athletic director at the end of the season -- his brother Tim resigned two years ago -- and possibly hoop coach Ken Kazmarek to Anne Arundel Community College, isn't the Bruins' athletic program rather unsettling at the moment?

* Is Broadneck lacrosse coach Clay White right in saying that when people mention the top goalies in the county, such as Steve Gorski of Northeast and Court Durling of Severn, that his own keeper, senior Sam Peterson, should be mentioned in the same breath?

"I hope Sam is not being over looked by everybody because he is one of the finest keepers in Broadneck history," said White, whose Bruins are 10-2 overall and ranked No. 11 in The Baltimore Sun top 15 for boys lacrosse.

* Is Annapolis sophomore Cristi Samaras unbelievable or what with 56 goals (18 in three games last week) and 10 assists in 12 games for the Panthers (9-3)?

Did you know that Cristi and her junior sister Cory (a defenseman), sophomore goalie Kate Brew and senior defenseman Emily Chones have been named to the Southern National Lacrosse Team that will tour the country this summer?

* Are you stick fans aware that you can catch all the NCAA tournament first-round action of Yale (11-3) at Navy (8-4) at 1 p.m. Sunday in Annapolis on 810 AM WYRE, with former Severna Park star and University of Maryland All-American John Lamon on the play-by-play?

* Is Chesapeake coach Jim Buchan one of the classiest people and one of the biggest promoters of girls lacrosse to ever come along in Anne Arundel County?

After his Cougars (6-5) were manhandled by fourth-ranked Severna Park, 19-5, Friday, Buchan said on the 24-Hour Sportsline, "This was possibly one of the most outstanding exhibitions of lacrosse I've ever been an unfortunate part of.

"Severna Park [9-1] just played a wonderful ballgame, and I think Coach [Carin] Peterson has done a real nice job with those kids, and they are peaking nicely, at just the right time."

* Have you heard that the Rick Carlson-assembled Silver Bullet 17-and-under boys soccer team is one of the favorites in this weekend's spring State Cup quarterfinals in Potomac?

"This is great exposure for high school juniors because a lot of college coaches attend the tournaments," said Carlson, a 1981 grad of Severna Park High.

* Did you know that local track officiating guru Keith Smith has been selected for the International Decathlon Championships May 9-10 at Mount St. Mary's in Emmitsburg?

Smith will officiate track and field athletes from Ireland, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Great Britain, Canada, Japan and the United States.

* Finally, we need to correct the anonymous male caller on the Sportsline who said Sunday's 10th annual All-County Academic-Athletic Team story contained an error.

We said that the Bakers of Old Mill, Alison and Amanda, were the first twins to be named the same year, and this is correct.

The caller said the Winterbottom twins from Glen Burnie made the 1989 team. While both were outstanding, Denise made the team; Deanna did not.

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