Francis Scott Key
The Key girls soccer team is no longer being pushed around in the Monocacy Valley League, thanks to the likes of Erin Murphy (six goals, one assist), Tina Wales (two goals, three assists) and Becky Buntin (two goals).
With three games left in the season, the Eagles have beaten Brunswick twice and Walkersville once on the way to a 3-2 league mark.
That is quite an improvement for Joe Linthicum's team, which won only one game last season.
Overall, Key is 3-6, with the four other losses coming to Carroll County foes.
Liberty trounced the Eagles, 4-0, but Linthicum came out of that game with a lot of respect for first-year Lions coach Lynn Stone.
"Lynn Stone showed me a lot of class," said Linthicum. "She pulled her top scorer, Amy Wolff, with 15 minutes left in the game. She could have left Wolff in the game and let her try to get some more goals to catch Ashlee Douglas [North Carroll] for the county scoring lead."
Douglas, South Carroll's Amber Clutter and Wolff are battling for the Carroll County scoring title.
The Lions' boys cross country team has received a major boost by sophomore Joe Ledda's return. Ledda, expected to battle Aaron Sweemer for the team's No. 1 spot, missed a month after twisting his ankle during a meet.
"We were counting a lot on Joe," said Liberty assistant coach Amy Filsinger. "He definitely has the desire and physical ability .. to be right on Aaron's heels, as long as he stays away from injuries."
In the first outing of his comeback, Ledda finished in the top 20 in the 25-team Harford Invitational.
It's been a good year for the North Carroll varsity field hockey team, but the Panthers' junior varsity also has been turning in some impressive numbers.
The JV team is 6-1-1, with a lot of players joining in the
successful ride that has been part of the school's
field hockey turnaround in 1992.
Forwards Erica Grundland, Marie Cashman and Laura Kenney and midfielders Beth Moores and Jen Richards have played major roles in the outstanding record.
Listen to what veteran Cavaliers girls cross country coach Rick Cook has to say about the Carroll County meet on Oct. 30 at Western Maryland College.
"You can cut the intensity with a knife," said Cook. "It's a money race as far as I'm concerned."
Cook said that yesterday's Central Maryland Conference meet at Linganore is supposed to be important.
"But I see it more as a way to gauge where your team stands in relationship to the other schools you might be running against in the state regional meet," said Cook. "For Westminster, it's a chance to measure where they are in relationship to Frederick, which is a 4A school like Westminster."
Cook said the meet has lost a lot of importance for South Carroll because Thomas Johnson and Linganore are no longer in the Cavaliers' 3A region.
MA Atholton, Howard and Centennial are in the Cavaliers' region.
These are not the happiest times for Westminster girls soccer coach Greg Bright.
His Owls were considered a virtual lock to win the Carroll County title, but South Carroll, led by sophomore whiz Amber Clutter, clinched the championship with two weeks left in the season.
Westminster (5-3) lost to South Carroll, North Carroll and Liberty and will meet the Cavaliers a second time Thursday at South Carroll.
Bright and the Owls could win back some respect this Thursday, but Bright was hoping for a lot more.
"We were a veteran team," said Bright. "But I wouldn't say we were that clear-cut a choice to win the county title. South Carroll is always a good team."