The weather was comfortable, the sun shining bright. A light breeze cooled the Gilman campus.
But perhaps more breathtaking than the atmosphere that greeted the 400 or so fans who turned out to watch No. 3 Gilman's 13-7 victory over No. 4 Loyola (2-3), was the poise of the young Gilman team, which starts only four seniors.
The offense, led by freshman Ryan Boyle (five goals), sophomore Jesse Kohler (one goal, four assists) and junior Alex Lieski (three goals), was incredibly accurate.
Gilman, up 5-4 at halftime, connected on 10 of its first 15 shots, including four of five in the third period, after which it led, 9-6. The Greyhounds registered 24 shots overall, with nine being stopped by Loyola keeper Pat McGinnis.
"Coach [John] Tucker tells us to be unselfish, work the ball in, look for the best shot," said Boyle, who helped Gilman outscore Loyola, 4-1, in the final period.
Defenders Jay Sullivan, a senior, Will Brassell, a junior, and Damien Davis, a sophomore, withstood five of six man-down situations and on many occasions blocked shots by Loyola players.
"You could hear them getting frustrated," said Davis, crediting defensive coach Dave Allan. "They were shooting to our chests and bodies a lot. They had to shoot from the outside, and Brian Nottingham, our goalie, stops those all day."
Nottingham had 14 saves as Gilman (5-0) won its third game in the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference. Gilman also has beaten No. 5 St. Paul's and No. 2 St. Mary's.
"We hesitated on wind-ups and their defenders were in the way by the time we shot," said Loyola coach Joe McFadden, whose team had its only lead, 1-0, under two minutes into the game.
"We hit the pipe five times, put shots in their chests. But I can't fault our effort because we're developing."
Second-team All-Metro Chris Malone (three goals, one assist) and Mike Morris (two, one) led Loyola, which outshot Gilman 19-9 in the first half and 32-23 overall.
After being outshot 4-0 to start the third period, Lieski, from 16 yards, and Boyle, assisted by Tyler Brawner, scored on Gilman's first two shots just 11 seconds apart.
Malone tried to keep the Dons in it.
His goal, from six yards, made it 7-5 after a 65-yard sprint, but was countered a minute later by Gilman's Brandon Cornes (two goals).
After a spinning move, which began from behind and to the right of Nottingham, Malone made it 8-6, scoring while falling to the ground.
But Boyle, assisted by Kohler for the third time, answered with 15 seconds left.
Pub Date: 4/04/97