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LOCAL SPORTS : HIGH SCHOOL LACROSSE PREVIEW

Teams at a glance

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Francis Scott Key Eagles

1995 record: no team

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Co-coaches: John Baugher and Carroll Seiler

Top players: Mike Corsini, Sr., A; Andy Foglesong, So. A; Mark Plank, Jr., G; Jason Fitzgerald, So, D; Ryan Day, Jr., D; Dan Edwards, So. A; Tim Beale, So., M; Davis Swain, Jr., M; Brandon Hoffman, Sr., G; Matt Adams, So., M; Ben Davis, So., M; Justin Day, Fr. M; Jason Davis, Sr., A/M; Clint Parrish, So., M; Dominic Mallaardi, Jr., D.

Outlook: Lacrosse comes to Uniontown on a club level this season where the Eagles will compete in the Western Maryland Lacrosse Conference. There's 30 players on the inaugural roster with the majority new to the game. Baugher and Seiler are stressing the fundamentals to get the program off the ground. Baugher is impressed with the enthusiasm and dedication shown by his players. A lot got their first taste of organized play last weekend when they played Thomas Johnson in a scrimmage. "The kids did an excellent job and I think we were above expectations," Baugher said. Corsini and Foglesong, two players with Gamber Smallwood rec league experience, will carry most of the load up front. Beale, a county wrestling champ, will see a lot of time at midfield with Swain. Plank, an offensive lineman and heavyweight wrestler, is a first-year player in goal. Baugher said he has made great strides in learning the position. The Eagles, playing an 11-game slate, will try a lot of different things this season and look to improve as the season goes on.

Liberty Lions

1995 record: 8-6.

Coach: Troy Barnes

Top players: David Johnson, Sr., G; Ryan Pagels, Jr., D; Gaelen Cross, Sr., D; Zach Dietrich, Jr., A; Roy Geiser, Sr., A; Mike Worozbyt, Sr., M; Jimmy Fitze, Sr., M; Chris Berarducci, Sr., M; Brett Dobelstein, Sr., A.

Outlook: The Lions are coming off their most successful season reaching the region final and are looking to build on it this year. Barnes is solid throughout his starting lineup and has some good but inexperienced athletes behind them. The Lions will rely heavily on their starting three midfielders Worozbyt, Fitze and Berarducci while a group of talented sophomores gain experience on the second line. Johnson returns to the goal after playing last season on defense. Cross is a tough presence at inside defense with Pagels, a three-year varsity player and still a junior, a standout outside. Dietrich had 24 goals last season to lead the attack, where Barnes will also rely on Dobelstein this season. "We're pretty solid on attack, at first midfield and are decent on defense, the question will subbing where there's inexperience. We have good athletes, just inexperience," Barnes said. The Lions make the jump to 3A-4A where they will see the likes of Centennial, Mount Hebron and South Carroll. "We're going to respect everybody we play, but we're also not going to back down from anyone," Barnes said.

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North Carroll Panthers

1995 record: 0-10.

Coach: John Piper.

Top players: Shane Lattau, Jr., M; John Dubicki, Jr., M; Tim Hackler, Jr., A; Randy Sullivan, Sr., D; Jeremy Edwards, Sr., D; Will Smith, Sr., M.

Outlook: Piper takes over a team that has won a total of one game the past two seasons. The goals are to work hard on fundamentals, improve as the season goes on and have some fun playing lacrosse. Piper has liked what he's seen so far, starting with the turnout. There was 28 players out for the team this season, 13 more than last year. "There hasn't been the winning feeling here at North Carroll for awhile so we're trying to get a positive attitude," Piper said. "We have a lot of work ahead of us." There's not a lot of flash in the Panthers' lineup, but a lot of solid players. Piper is comfortable with any of his six defenders and they'll have to all do their share with juniors Tim Schestag and Billy Aberts both still learning the goalie position. Lattau is a two-year starter at midfield and Smith is the kind of player that does a little of everything. Piper said there's some speed in the midfield and others with sound stickwork. Hackler leads an attack that will work hard and improve as the season progresses. Of the 28 players on the roster, only eight are seniors and 19 are newcomers to the varsity level.

South Carroll Cavaliers

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1995 record: 12-3.

Coach: Jeff Alisauckas.

Top players: Rob Witte, Sr., A; David Price, Sr., A; Charlie Gibson, Jr., M; Tim Bettis, Sr., D; Charlie Gallagher, Sr., D; Dan Wroten, Sr., M; Rob Onda, So., M; Mike Rabinovitz, So. M; Jason Weisenborn, Jr., A; Kjeld Lauritzen, Sr., G.

Outlook: The Cavaliers lost some weapons, but still have plenty of returning talent and strong newcomers to again be considered the elite in the county. Witte, a first-team all-county selection last season with 35 goals and 11 assists, has added strength and speed to lead the attack. The numbers he put up last season were third best in the county and on his own team behind Tom Luster and John Eaton, both lost to graduation. "I think with Tommy and John around, Rob was a little overshadowed last season. He's definitely someone to be reckoned with," Alisauckas said. Price is a versatile midfielder who will be the key on faceoffs and Gibson is a strong open-field player. The Cavaliers have a new starting defense and a new philosophy with plans to mix in some man-to-man defense along with their zone. Bettis, Gallagher and Rojas all played together on man-down situations last season and Lauritzen will spend his first year in goal on varsity. "We have the legs and sticks to play man-to-man," Alisauckas said. "In zone defense, some teams can move the ball around faster than we can move [to get to the spots]. It's been a smooth adjustment and the kids have responded positively and like it."

Westminster Owls

1995 record: 5-7.

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Coach: Jim Peters

Top players: Dave Hare, Sr., F; Dave Baker, Sr., A; Mark McAlonan, Sr., F; Jonathan Gibson, Sr., G; Rolland Backhaus, Sr., F; Chris Dain, Sr., D; Dan Hood, Sr., D; Brooks Weaver, Sr., D; Tony Palaia, Sr., A; Dave Middleton, Sr., D.

Outlook: A talented group of seniors lead an Owls team that has a little bit of everything this season including five three-year varsity starters. Gibson, one of those veterans, is in goal and takes charge of the defense with Dain, Hood and Weaver also back with varsity experience. Peters has three solid lines and a lot of speed at midfield with Hare (14 goals, 14 assists) back as the team's leading scorer from last season. Backhaus will be the key on draws and McAlonan is the player who will see a lot of time on the field in every situation. Baker is the team's finisher and Palaia makes a lot of things happen up front. "We want the midfield to open it up for us. We have a lot of good athletes as seniors and I expect a lot of them to understand the game a lot more now having played at this level," Peters said. "Baker is a kid who can score. Kids duck when he shoots the ball. Palaia is our transition man, he really gets a lot of things started." Gibson is a complete player in goal, able to come up with the big save and also distribute to get things started. Sophomore Paul Malinowski also will see a lot of time on defense. Glenn P. Graham

Pub Date: 3/21/96


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