Sarah Campbell has worked hard, both in classroom and on the soccer field, during her four years at Howard High School.
On Friday the 13th of this month, it all paid off. That's when she signed her acceptance letter to attend the Naval Academy in Annapolis.
"I'm extremely excited," said Campbell, who will report July 1. "It definitely will be a challenge, both mentally and physically. It's a stressful environment that not everyone can survive, but I definitely feel I can."
And with good reason. Campbell has a 3.96 grade-point average -- she got her only B in Latin II in her freshman year -- and a 1,370 SAT score. She ranks eighth in her class of 254.
In soccer, Campbell was an honorable mention her freshman year, second-team All-County as a sophomore, and for the last two years, a first-team selection.
Navy first contacted Campbell through the mail in November after watching her play in the All-State all-star game at UMBC. One thing led to another and Campbell, who received her nomination from Rep. Ben Cardin, went to the academy for an official visit in January.
She was accepted in late February and decided a couple weeks later after ruling out Loyola in Baltimore and Colgate in Hamilton, N.Y.
"There were a bunch of different reasons," said Campbell, who was in the ROTC program at Howard the last two years. "The integrity and honor to go to a service academy had a lot to do with it. It just felt right."
Campbell will be obligated to serve her country for five years following her stay in Annapolis. She plans to major in aerospace engineering and said she might "put in a bid for flight school" after her first four years are up.
"It's an option," she said.
Campbell will see a familiar face at the academy. Cathy Sybert, who played soccer at the Institute of Notre Dame and is a teammate of Campbell's on the Maryland Majestic club team, also has been accepted.
Navy's soccer team, coached by Carin Gabarra, a U.S. national women's team member, was 10-8 overall last season and finished fourth in the Patriot League.
Wanda Elledge, a teammate of Campbell's at Howard and a first-team All-County selection, as well, will attend and play soccer at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N.J., on a scholarship.
"When I visited Rutgers I knew that's where I wanted to be," said Elledge, who plays on the Columbia Magic club team. "They're a young team, and I want to grow with them. I fit in with the players, and I liked the coach [Charlie Duccilli] a lot."
Rutgers, a member of the Big East Conference, was 8-12 overall last season.
Oakland Mills first-team All-County selection Leslie Miller has received a Navy ROTC scholarship and will attend Villanova.
"I'm really looking forward to it," said Miller, who has a 3.8 grade-point average and scored 1,310 on her SAT.
Miller, who will owe the Navy three years of service following her graduation, said the Philadelphia school is a wonderful opportunity that will provide her many options later on.
"It sounds exciting. I'm really looking forward to it," said Miller, who will stay active in soccer but not play for Villanova.
Miller's father is a retired master chief in the Navy, and her mother is a Navy captain.
Softball unbeatens to meet
Three games into the softball season, two county teams remain unbeaten. And that will change this afternoon, when No. 8-ranked Howard (3-0) plays host to No. 11 River Hill (3-0).
The defending county champion Lions have beaten Atholton (22-2), No. 15 Centennial (3-2) and No. 7 Glenelg (1-0). River Hill downed Glenelg (9-1), Long Reach (14-2) and Oakland Mills (22-3).
The Hawks are hitting .436 as a team. Leadoff hitter Amber Rieg went 5-for-5 in Wednesday's win at Oakland Mills and is batting .722 (8-for-11, two doubles, one triple) overall. Shortstop Amanda Bile, batting second, is hitting .778 (7-for-9, three doubles) and clean-up hitter Lisa Humphrey is at .556 (5-for-9).
River Hill coach Dave Vitagliano said his team is playing well in a number of areas.
"We're pleased with our hitting and also our defense," Vitagliano said. "We're making smart plays and doing the little things."
Hawks pitcher Holly Gick has struck out 16 and walked two in 17 innings.
Howard has earned a little of revenge already this season with wins over Centennial and Glenelg. The Eagles beat Howard twice in the regular season last year, and the Gladiators eliminated Howard from last season's playoffs. Howard junior pitcher Kelly O'Neill has played well, striking out six against Centennial and seven against Glenelg.
Three unbeaten in tennis
Centennial, River Hill and Mount Hebron are undefeated after three matches.
The Vikings won four of five doubles matches Wednesday to hand Wilde Lake its first loss, 5-4. The teams of Stanley Rajakumar-Steve Hull, Divya Chandran-Deepa Chandran, Ashly Ellingsworth-Libby Smith and Joe-Woo and Megan Moulding won for Mount Hebron. The Vikings' Seema Jose won her singles match.
Strahl to Arizona State
Brian Strahl, goalie for Wilde Lake's club hockey team as well as the Washington Junior Capitals, will continue his education and skating at Arizona State University in Tempe, Ariz.
"I fell in love with the college," said the 6-foot-3, 185-pound Strahl. "They have a real good hockey team, and they were interested in me."
Arizona State finished sixth in the nation last year in the American Collegiate Hockey Association.
Strahl, who has a 3.5 grade-point average, joined Howard's Rob Ross as the only two Howard County players on the Washington Junior Capitals. The team played 60 games this season, traveling as far north as Niagara Falls in Canada. As members of the southern-most squad in the 10-team league, Strahl and Ross were often headed north on weekends.
Strahl had a 2.33 goals-against average and a 93.6 save percentage for Wilde Lake. His goals-against average for the Junior Capitals was 3.19 and his save percentage was 89.5
Pub Date: 3/27/98