Round One of the two-part series featuring No. 14 Towson and unranked Catonsville goes to Towson.
Meg Miley scored 1:13 into the game and added a goal early in the second half to spark the Generals to a 3-0 victory in yesterday's Baltimore County Championship.
But the Generals (9-3) haven't finished with the Comets (10-3). Thanks to the blind draw for regional playoff berths, the two teams will meet in the Class 2A North opener tomorrow at Catonsville.
Wouldn't they rather have played just one game with everything on the line?
"Now I would," said Towson coach Courtney Lampton with a laugh after the game, "but really I'm always one for rematches."
So is Catonsville, which played an uncharacteristically defensive game after clobbering Overlea, 8-1, Monday. That clinched the Mallard Division championship and a spot in yesterday's game.
"We let them play the ball and then we reacted to what they were doing," said Catonsville coach Kathy Schuyler. "All year long, we've dictated play. Our strength is in playing an aggressive game. The idea of the county championship might have made us a little more cautious, and that's not our game."
On the other hand, visiting Towson moved the ball extremely well, fueled by an aggressive midfield of Mary Grasso, Monica Heddings and Megan Kanski and a speedy line. As a result, the Generals piled up a 16-3 edge in shots and a 10-3 margin on penalty corners.
Miley, a junior who spent most of the season on defense, scored her goals on nearly identical plays. Both times, Comets goalie Jamie Harris repelled a first shot only to see Miley slip it in off the rebound. The first time, Miley took the initial shot; the second time, Amy Stringer did.
With 20:40 left in the game, Heddings added the final goal on a long shot that bounced past several Comets and caught Harris (nine saves) out of position.
Comets center midfielder Annie Yager said her team was a little intimidated by the Generals only because Towson won the tougher Heron Division title.
"They come into this having an advantage, because they play harder teams," said Yager.
Both coaches have to keep keep their teams from expecting a rerun of yesterday's game in tomorrow's regional opener.
"Some people might think, 'Oh, we just beat them Tuesday, so we really don't have to worry about it,' but we do," said Grasso.