No high school coach would ever want to make a larger-than-life hero out of a sophomore.
But there may be nothing Francis Scott Key field hockey coach Mindi Wagner can do to stop the growing tales of wonder about her young forward, Stacey Greene.
People seem to be lining up in Uniontown these days to tell their favorite story about Greene's field hockey prowess.
The man in the Key press box last week was serious when he talked about Greene's shot being so hard that his daughter never even saw the ball go past her into the cage during a warm-up session.
"Guess what?" the man said to a friend. "My daughter got to warm up Stacey Greene the other day and I was standing nearby. When Stacey shot, I asked my daughter if she saw the ball. My daughter said 'Oh, did she already shoot? I'm glad. I didn't see it.' "
During a Key game at Westminster a couple of weeks ago, a girl keeping the statistics book for the Eagles didn't hesitate when asked what player had taken a shot that bounced off the goal post.
"I'm sure it was Stacey Greene," she said. "She would be the one with a shot like that."
Cannonball shots. Lightning-quick dashes down the field for goals. Speed and more speed.
This is Stacey Greene, just five games into a sophomore season after leading the team in scoring with eight goals as a freshman.
The expectations are immense, but she seems up to the challenge. She already has five goals and two assists this season.
Even Wagner said she tells her star player: "You can lose them [defenders] with your speed."
However, there are times when Greene suddenly starts to worry about not being able to score a goal.
"Sometimes I get afraid I'm not going to score," she said. "That's why I don't score until the second half a lot. I do think a lot about how much I'm going to be expected to do the rest of my career because of what I've already done."
Those feelings come as no surprise to her coach.
"Stacey's a worrywart," said Wagner. "We just have to keep reassuring her and telling her what she is capable of doing. She is very fast."
Right now, Greene is stealing a lot of thunder from South Carroll senior Tracie DiDio, who entered the season as the big-name player in the county.
DiDio has struggled early, with little support from her inexperienced teammates. Greene is surrounded by better players for now, and it showed Thursday night at Key when the first DiDio-Greene matchup occurred.
Greene and Key broke open a 1-1 tie in the second half and coasted to a 3-1 win over DiDio and the Cavaliers. Greene had one goal and DiDio was held scoreless.
Greene said South Carroll was triple-teaming her, evidence of the amount of respect opponents have for her. It also proves how unlimited the field hockey future is for the New Windsor resident. But Greene isn't putting all her collegiate hopes on a field hockey scholarship.
"I just want a college scholarship for any one of the three sports I play -- track, field hockey or basketball," she said.
In track, Greene was part of a state 1A champion girls 400- and 800-meter relay teams for the Eagles last spring.
Greene certainly has one important ingredient for athletes of the '90s -- speed. It could take her a long way.