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1998 BOYS AND GIRLS LACROSSE PREVIEWS

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Meade's boys lacrosse team won its first game in two years last week, and we erred in noting the Mustangs' last winning season, which was an 8-6 showing in 1992 for coach Lou Norbeck. We thank Matt Rayman, who played on that team, for calling the 24-hour Sportsline to fill us in.

Anne Arundel boys

Annapolis Panthers

1997 record: 12-3

Coach: Dan Hart

Top players: Steve Brianas, Sr., A; Craig Rentch, Sr., A; Danny Marcellus, Sr., A; David Wooster, So., A; Pete Ludlam, Sr., M; Brad Downer, Sr., M; Dustin McConnaughhay, Sr., M; Will Phillips, So., M; Josh Lesko, So., M; Mike Donlin, Sr., D; Paul Haberlein, Jr., D; Judd Carstens, Sr., D; Cole Gelrod, So., D; Jeff Paulson, Jr., G; Jeff Childs, Sr., G.

Outlook: Experience plus talent usually means a successful season, and the Panthers are loaded in those departments. "We look good and seem to have everything covered," said Hart, who begins his 10th season as Annapolis coach and 18th overall. "We have a lot of four- and three-year varsity players. It's my most experienced team in years." On the attack, Brianas (15 goals, eight assists), Rentch (22-14), and Marcellus (13-12) are all four-year varsity players. Two more four-year vets, Ludlam (35-17) and Downer (28-17), will team with three-year player McConnaughhay in midfield. Combinations of seniors Ryan VanBuren and Justin Posey and sophomores Phillips, Lesko and Brett McConnaughhay (Dustin's brother) will make up a solid No. 2 midfield. Ludlam, who signed with Towson University, was first team All-County as a junior, and Downer was second team All-County. Donlin, another four-year player and second team All-County choice last spring, will anchor the close defense. "Our question mark right now is who will start in the goal," said Hart, who has led the Panthers to an overall 53-7 record the last four years, including a state title in 1994 (16-0).

Annapolis Area Christian Eagles

1997 record: 10-7

Coach: Dick Bitzer

Top players: Justin Peake, Sr., A; Scott Whitford, Jr., A; Alex Bitzer, Fr., A; Dustin Coombe, Fr., A; Eric Strickland, Fr., A; John Rosacker, Jr., M; Jeff Lash, Sr., M; Ryan McCuen, Fr., M; Justin Smith, Sr., D; Garth Thorpe, Fr., D; Aaron Hendricks, Jr., G.

Outlook: Coach Bitzer is excited about his Eagles' first season in the MIAA C Conference. The Eagles have played as an independent the last four years but the school entered its boys athletic program in the MIAA this school year. AACS will compete against Cardinal Gibbons, Glenelg Country School, Sts. Peter & Paul and Towson Catholic in the C conference in lacrosse.

Archbishop Spalding Cavaliers

1997 record: 9-8

Coach: Steve Seivold

Top players: Neil Adams, Sr., M/A; Steve Kelly, Jr., M; Mike Sinko, Sr., M/A; Brian Swartz, Sr., D; Lonnie Shuler, Jr., DM; Ian Andrysak, Sr., G; Rich Stanley, So, G.

Outlook: Despite last week's opening 15-6 loss to Mount St. Joseph, Seivold is optimistic that the Cavaliers can improve on last year's record. A member of the MIAA B Conference with Friends, John Carroll, Park and Archbishop Curley, Spalding needs to improve its stick work and clear the ball better. "We committed too many unforced errors against St. Joe, and that was something we had a problem with in our scrimmages," said Seivold, a 1986 Severn grad in his second season at Spalding.

Arundel Wildcats

1997 record: 9-5

Coach: Clint Gosnell

Top players: Ben Cimini, Sr., A; Brett Bujac, Jr., A; Ryan Harris, Sr., M; John Navarro, Jr., M; Henry Hanburger, Jr., M; J.B. McConville, Jr., M; Howard McDonald, Sr., D; Greg Wotkech, Jr., D; Brett Wilmer, So., D; Matt Malloy, Jr., G.

Outlook: Since winning the Class 3A-4A state championship in 1995 (16-2), the Wildcats have had back-to-back 9-5 seasons. Gosnell, starting his 22nd season in Gambrills, might be happy with another 9-5 log, considering his team's youth and inexperience. "We're very young, but we have some talent, and it's a matter of how fast we learn," said Gosnell. Harris is a key player as he moves from the goal to midfield joining a trio of 11th graders, and junior Malloy steps into the cage.

Broadneck Bruins

1997 record: 17-3

Coach: Clay White

Top players: Joey Case, Jr., A; Jason Randolph, Jr., A; Rusty Petsche, Sr., A; Matt Atkinson, Sr., M; Kelly Nash, Jr., M; Phil

Morrison, Sr., M; Ruark Criner, Sr., M; Ray Putt, Sr., M; Jamie Powers, Sr., D; Dustin Hall, Sr., D; Sam Strothers, Jr., D; Josh Schneider, Sr., D; Tom Dryer, Sr., G.

Outlook: "Three-peat" is the chant in Cape St. Claire, where the Bruins are shooting for a third straight state title and the sixth since 1987. The Bruins repeated as Class 3A-4A state champs by outlasting Mount Hebron, 9-8, in overtime last May. "Our goal always is to win a state championship and a three-peat has never been done at Broadneck," said White. Since lacrosse became an official state championship sport in 1990, no county team has won three straight. Broadneck returns a strong nucleus led by All-County second-team attackmen Case (28 goals, 31 assists) and Randolph (37-25). Petsche completes what should be one of the county's top attacks.

Chesapeake Cougars

1997 record: 12-4

Coach: Brien McMurray

Top players: Mike McIntyre, Jr., A; Todd Mitchell, Sr., A; John Hackman, Fr., A; Jason Gogolinski, Sr., M; Andy Fileta, Sr., M; Brian Oakley, So., M; Jon Eser, Sr., D; Eric Hartlove, Sr., D; Nick Garufi, Sr., D; Keath Puller, Sr., G.

Outlook: Coming off their finest season since 1987, when they were 13-3, the Cougars knocked off state champion Broadneck twice -- 10-9 in overtime in regular season and 11-10 in the county championship game. A couple days after the emotional county final, the Cougars lost in the playoffs to Annapolis, another team they beat in regular season. "Our strength will definitely be our defense until our offense matures," said McMurray, The Sun's county and metro Coach of the Year last spring. McIntyre, who McMurray says has Division I potential, returns on attack after scoring 35 goals and 17 assists as a sophomore.

Glen Burnie Gophers

1997 record: 5-9

Coach: Hank Schorreck

Top players: James Riley, Sr., A; Frank Servidio, Sr., M; Dave Norfolk, Sr., M; Bryant McKean, Sr., D; Bob Hall, Sr., D; Nick Wzientek, Jr., D; Chris Miller, Sr., G.

Outlook: Schorreck has a strange, "welcome back" type of group as he begins his fifth season. "We are thin in experience with a lot of seniors who played as freshmen or sophomores, quit, and are now back," said Schorreck, who led Glen Burnie to its first non-losing season (7-7) in 20 years in 1996. Riley, second team All-County as a soph, returns for his final year after leading the Gophers with 35 goals and 14 assists last season.

Meade Mustangs

1997 record: 0-14

Coach: Bradley Gray

Top players: Eddie Borys, Sr., A; Brian Fritzinger, Sr., A; Mark Whipple, Jr., A; Chris Whipple, Jr., M; Adam Dutko, Jr., M; Ross Nosal, Jr., M; Carlos Gonzalez, Sr., D; Randy Baron, Sr., D; Brian Hunter, Sr., D; Manuel Gonzalez, Sr., G.

Outlook: Gray, the fifth coach at Meade in as many years and the 11th in the last 20, is not asking for much. "Our goal is to win a game, just one," said Gray, who inherits a team that hasn't won in the last two seasons and finished with 13 players and no JV last spring. Meade has not had a winning season since 1986. . Gray, from Gaithersburg, attended Good Counsel High and the University of Delaware. He's had assistant coaching stints at Oakton, Va., Atholton and Watkins Mill.

North County Knights

1997 record: 9-7

Coach: Paul Shea

Top players: Mark Bloomquist, Jr., G; Bryan Ashburn, Sr., A; Chad Schneider, Sr., A; Dallas Simmons, Sr., A; Matt Breinbach, Sr., M; Ben Letagan, Sr., M; Justin Bates, Jr., M; Andrew Walenga, Sr., D; Mike Parks, Sr., D; Ray Krick, Sr., D; Brandon Holland, Sr., D.

Outlook: If the Knights develop any kind of offensive punch at all, their defense could carry them to a great season. "We're big and physical defensively but small on offense, with no one go-to guy," said Shea, who is in his eighth season at North County. The Knights return goalie Bloomquist who had 235 saves in 16 games as the only sophomore All-County starter.

Northeast Eagles

1997 record: 2-13

Coach: Steve Gorski

Top players: Brandon Whipps, Jr., A; Lenny Bossom, Sr., A; Zach Greeno, Jr., A; Adam Mulbauer, Sr., M; Doug Saba, Sr., M; Joe Rothgeb, Jr., M; Doug Troyer, So., M; Tony Thomas, So., D; Rob Harmon, So., D; Mike Wright, Jr., D; James Taylor, Jr., D; Mike Whisman, Jr., G.

Outlook: Gorski believes he has a group who wants to do things the right way as he begins his second season. "We got rid of the kids who didn't want to work and had their own goals, " said Gorski. Gorski feels this year's Eagles have the right mind set to turn things around (5-24 last two years). Whisman is a strength in the goal. "Mike is our best athlete, and he makes up for a lot of mistakes," said Gorski.

Old Mill Patriots

1997 record: 4-11

Coach: Fran Duffy

Top players: Paul Venturella, Jr., A; Sean Roche, Jr., A; Josh Glodek, So., A; Brian Zerrlaut, Fr., A; Justin Jones, Sr., M; Jamie German, Sr., M; Isaac Deschaine, Sr., M; Elliott Reincke, Jr., M; Kenny Johns, Jr., M; Jason Edney, Jr.,D; Chris D'Andrea, So., D; John Reed, Sr., G.

Outlook: Winning one more game last season than they did in 1996 coupled with the best crop of JV players Old Mill has had in his four years at the Millersville school, Duffy can see a bright future. "I'm encouraged, because we're developing a feeder system in our area, and it's starting to show," said Duffy. Reed, an All-County football linebacker, is strong in goal.

St. Mary's Saints

1997 record: 5-7

Coach: Jim Moorhead

Top players: Rob Hoffman, Sr., D; Ken Hutton, Sr., D; Matt Pessagno, So., D; Ryan Metzbower, Sr., M; John Harasyn, Sr., M; Drew Pfarr, So., M; Adam Shiley, Sr., M; John Thomas, Sr., M; Chris Summers, Jr., A; Beau Pich, Sr., A; Kevin Callahan, Sr., A; Brian Messineo, Sr., A; Chris Garrity, Jr., G.

Outlook: After going 17-0 in 1996, the Saints fell off to 5-7, losing four games by a goal in the rugged MIAA A Conference. The Saints lost 52 from attack to graduation. But Summers and Messineo got a lot of playing time, and Pich, one of two transfers from River Hill (Howard County), and Callahan are expected to contribute offensively. "We have no true starter back on attack, and we didn't get much scoring from midfield," said Moorhead (201-74 in 18 seasons). The defense could stand out, with Hoffman, JV grad Pessagno and River Hill transfer Hutton.

Severn Admirals

1997 record: 3-9

Coach: Charlie Toomey

Top players: Doug Machen, Sr., A; Marshall Feldman, Jr., A; Randy Newman, Sr., M; Matt McFarland, Sr., M; Robert Hantzske, Jr., M; Zach Mills, Sr., D; Adam Pugh, Jr., D; Ron Staines, So., D; Lee Scott, Sr., D; Matt Wright, Sr., D-M; Andrew Larkin, Jr., G.

Outlook: The Admirals have not had a winning season in five years, but third-year coach Toomey is optimistic. "We should find out a lot [Friday], when we visit St. Mary's at Weems-Whelan in Annapolis," said Toomey. The Admirals won a pair of non-league games in North Carolina last week. Severn returns nine seniors and is carrying 30 varsity players. The team strength appears to be on defense with Mills, Wright and Scott the senior leaders, and Larkin ready to take over in the goal.

Severna Park Falcons

1997 record: 11-3

Coach: Mike Bellotte

Top players: Adam Baxter, Sr., D; Matt Briggs, Sr., D; Austin DeRosa, Sr.D; Dave Wagner, So., D; Josh Cornett, Sr., M; Darrin McAlister, Sr., M; Jerry Cornett, So., M; Ryan Miller, Sr., A; Jon Lamon, Sr., A; Bert Whitelock, Sr., A; Steve Smith, Jr., G; Rob Planey, Sr., G.

Outlook: Bellotte comes from a lacrosse-playing family and brings youth league coaching experience to his first high-school coaching job. Bellotte played at St. Mary's High, Anne Arundel Community College and Loyola, and was headed to Towson before a broken neck in an auto accident ended his career. Bellotte has a nucleus of returning players that opposing coaches are saying is among the county's very best. The 6-3, 205-pound Baxter could be imposing defensively with his 4.6 speed in the 40-yard dash and Briggs, an All-County basketball player, should complement him. The attack is solid with three seniors -- Miller, Lamon and St. Joe transfer Whitelock.

Southern Bulldogs

1997 record: 9-9

Coach: Ray Bowen

Top players: Steve Pumphrey, Jr., A; Andy Robson, Jr., A; Rob Witt, So., A; Brian Kadjeski, Sr., M; Albert Mudd, Sr., M; Josh Booth, Sr., M; Paul Brown, Sr., M; Glenn Dixon, Jr., M; Phil Glenn, Sr., D; Paul Dixon, Jr., D; Ben Church, So., D; Brian Dimarzo, Jr., G.

Outlook: After what coach Bowen says was "a taste of the state playoff atmoshere," the Bulldogs are ready in his words to "go for it." Southern was edged by Towson, 6-5 in the final 21 seconds of the Class 1A-2A state semis and graduated only five players. Pumphrey returns on attack after scoring 42 goals as a sophomore, including two in the loss to Towson. "I love our schedule [eight of 14 games against Class 4A schools], because it really prepares us for the playoffs," said Bowen.

South River Seahawks

1997 record: 8-7

Coach: Greg Carroll

Top players: John Higdon, Sr., G; Chris Mackey, Sr., D; Aaron Aisquith, Sr., D; Bryan Bailey, Sr., D; Ryan Poet, Sr., D; Rich

Howard, Sr., D; Dan Summey, Sr., M; Matt Henshaw, Sr., M; Eric Mills, Sr., D; Tony Barranca, Sr., D; Mike Moraz, Jr., M; Zach Ditmars, Jr., M; Steve Fisher, Sr., A; Jeff Mullenix, So., A; Cory Poet, So., A; Bob Woody, Fr., A.

Outlook: South River lost in the Class 1A-2A final in 1995 in last year's region semis to Southern, 7-6. Carroll says his Hawks "should be in a dead heat with Southern" once again. If South River's young attack comes along and Carroll can develop a second midfield behind seniors Summey, Henshaw and Mills, the Seahawks could be tough.

Pub Date: 3/19/98

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