Teams at a glance

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Annapolis Panthers

1998 record: 8-3

Coach: Stephanie Rowland

Top players: Katie Hartman, Sr., A; Ashley Mays, Sr., D; Emily Childs, Sr., G; Beth Herman, Sr., D; Ellen Jewel, Sr., D; Kate Steinfeld, Sr., D; Kristen Vandriessche, Sr., A; Amanda Smear, Jr., MF.

Outlook: The Panthers' typically explosive attack may take a back seat to defense this season. Last fall's defense returns intact. Rowland is switching to a man-to-man defense for quicker transition after playing zone in past years. Childs, in her fourth season, covers all the angles in goal and keeps the entire defense together with constant communication. Mays, a second-team All-County selection in 1998, will be counted on to score, distribute and control the middle of the field at center back. Smear also will be a key in transition with Hartman and Vandendriessche joining sophomores Terea Strumm and Emily Boggs as the likely scoring sources.

Archbishop Spalding

Coach: Leslee Brady

1998 record: 5-11

Top players: Kristen Walker, Sr., MF; Julia Gallagher, So., MF; Ashley Howard, So. F; Katie Dall, Sr., G; Mary Monaghan, Jr., D.

Outlook: Brady takes over for former coach Mary Pat Bozel, who left after 10 years. The early focus is sharpening stick skills and finishing scoring chances. Walker played all over the field last year but will settle into center midfield to provide a starting point. A strong two-way player, she brings good field sense, the team's hardest drive and leadership. Gallagher, in her second varsity season, also will be counted on as a link between the offense and defense. The Cavaliers are looking for scoring punch from Howard, a newcomer with a good knack around the goal. Quick and aggressive at sweeper, Monaghan is a steadying influence. Competition is taking place in goal, where Dall returns with sophomore Kristen Schwartzmeyer adding depth.

Arundel Wildcats

Coach: Clint Gosnell

1998 record: 11-5

Top players: Emily Walther, Sr., D; Elizabeth Harris, Sr., F; Meredith Carpenter, Sr., D; Melissa Daley, Sr., D; Natalie Marano, Sr., G; Jill Marano, Jr., MF/F; Michelle Hornfleck, Jr., F.

Outlook: Gosnell is excited for good reasons -- 12 returnees, a talented group of newcomers, and early dividends from the area's first feeder program; 16 freshmen tried out. The veteran coach said hard work can bring out endless potential, and he expects his Wildcats to play their best ball at season's end. Jill Marano has more-polished skills this season and should be a factor at center midfield. She also has the team's most powerful, accurate shot. Hornfeck and Harris also can create and finish. Walther, a three-year starter, is the mainstay of a mostly new defense. Carpenter has made a smooth transition from midfield to help out, and Daley is the coordinator at sweeper. Natalie Marano, backup goalie last fall, gets her chance and looks ready. Three of the team's five losses last season came against state champion Severna Park.

Broadneck Bruins

1998 record: 7-5-1

Coach: Phoebe Kelly

Top players: Megan Atkinson, Sr., MF; Amanda McElwee, Sr., MF; K.C. Swieconek, Sr., D; Meghan Callahan, Sr., D; Sara Glassman, Sr., G; Shane Rigling, Jr., A; Melanie Bell, Sr., D.

Outlook: All the pieces of the puzzle appear to be in place for a successful season. It starts with Atkinson and McElwee in the middle of the field, where Kelly expects them to keep the ball moving and handling the team's set offensive plays. Glassman, in her third varsity season, covers the angles well and provides leadership to a veteran defense highlighted by Swieconek at right back. While the defense will hold its own, Kelly is hoping most of the action will be played at the other end. She said scoring should come from all directions with Rigling one of the primary finishers.

Chesapeake Cougars

1998 record: 8-4-3

Coach: Jerry Taylor

Top players: Pam Hemmings, Sr., D; Emily Ison, Sr., MF; Jen Franklin, Sr., A; Becky Marks, Sr., A; Karin Michalwicz, Sr., D; Morgan Powell, Sr., MF; Melissa Bryant, Jr., D.

Outlook: Strengths at every position seem likely to continue on the winning tradition at Chesapeake. Scoring was a problem last fall, but Franklin and Marks should supply answers. Franklin is fast with a strong shot and Marks is always right where she needs to be. The defense is in transition, but Hemmings looks at home at center back. Bryant has made a smooth transition to right back after playing midfield last fall. Ison, a second-team All-County pick last season, brings superb stickwork to midfield, knowing when to carry the ball and when to give it up. She'll push up plenty to get involved in the offensive mix. Further solidifying the midfield is Powell, a tri-captain with Franklin and Hemmings.

Meade Mustangs

1998 record: 0-12

Coach: Angela King

Top players: Alicia Donahue, Sr., MF; Jen Bietzell, Sr., F; Diana Shepherd, Jr., F; Jen Gonselaz, Sr., G; Amanda Entwistle, Jr., D; Christina Gri, Jr., D.

Outlook: The Mustangs continue to take gradual steps as they work on building a solid foundationn in King's second season. Good news early was the increased number of players out for the team -- 26 from just 17 in 1998. Fundamentals are again the focal point, with King stressing stickwork and conditioning. The Mustangs have some experienced players back to help out the newcomers. Donahue is in her second season in the middle. Up front, Bietzell and Shepherd provide speed, athleticism and an understanding of the game. The defense has hard workers in Entwistle and Grim with Gonselaz quick and aggressive in the cage.

North County Knights

1998 record: 0-9-1

Coach: Brian Bowles

Top players: Kathryn Francazi, So., F; Amanda Stevens, Sr., A; Megan Willey, Jr., MF; Sara Escudero, Jr., MF; Erin Knott, Sr., MF; Allison Yau, Sr., D.

Outlook: Last season's record doesn't indicate it, but strides are being made at North County. Bowles is teaching more tactical aspects of the game and adding set plays. Willey covers the field well at her center midfield position, providing tenacity and drive. Stevens is the veteran of a young offense that should improve. Francazi, new to the sport last fall, is a player Bowles will count on now and in the future. Yau keys the defense, with sophomore Gretchen Jacobs in goal. Bowles called this a huge building year for the Knights, who hosted their second summer camp and had more players involved in the sport during the off-season.

Old Mill Patriots

1998 record: 2-10-1

Coach: Denise Hermann

Top players: Katie Duncan, Sr., F; Karri Shives, Sr., D; Corrie Dotson, Sr., A; Sara Smothers, Sr., F; Kathy Wilson, Sr., D; Kelli Schneider, Sr., MF.

Outlook: If there was ever a season the Patriots can get over the hump, this just may be the one. With 12 players returning, Hermann believes she has a solid foundation to work with to turn some of last year's losses into wins. Attack -- featuring Duncan, Dotson and Smothers -- is where the team's strength and experience can be found. With crisper passing and more efficiency on set plays, the Patriots should have more scoring opportunities with the goals spread out. Shives, the center back, and sweeper Wilson will lead the defense with junior Stephanie Phillips new in goal. Schneider gets help from senior Jen DeBarry as the two key links at midfield.

St. Mary's Saints

1998 record: 11-5-5

Coach: Patti Lavell

Top players: Courtney Thornton, Sr., M; Kelley Busik, Sr., F; Kristen Gaudreau, Sr., F; Jamie McGraw, Sr., MF; Addie Lewis, Sr. G; Lana Smith, Sr., F; Allson Lynch, Jr., F.

Outlook: The Saints can send waves of talent up front and have standouts in the middle with Thornton and McGraw. Their only question lies at the defensive end where they must replace some quality defenders lost to graduation. Busik (five goals, four assists) and Gaudreau (three goals, three assists) lead a senior attack that comes back intact and the group is getting a strong push from some talented underclassmen led by Lynch. Lavell has the luxury of running players in and out up front to keep everyone fresh. Thornton, a first-team All-County pick last fall, possesses all the tools as a strong two-way player. At center back, McGraw is smart, aggressive with a strong drive. More depth comes in goal where returnee Lewis gets help from newcomers Pam Gateau and Rebecca Lavell.

Severn Admirals

1998 record: 8-6-7

Coach: Renie Sotiropoulis

Top players: Ashley Dodson, Jr., F; Meg Myers, Sr., D; Jen Gens, So. MF; Jane Friend, Sr., G; Tara Slidell, Sr., F/MF.

Outlook: Dodson and Myers are the starting points of an Admiral team that brings back most of its starting lineup from 1998. Quick with the ball and creative inside the scoring area, Dodson scored nine times last season and is expected to do a lot of the same this fall. Myers not only provides outstanding work at the defensive end, but also will figure in the scoring as a go-to player on corner hits. An all-senior defense with Friend back in goal will make the Admirals tough to be scored on. The forward line will get a boost of energy with the freshmen additions of Melanie Dodson, Ashley's sister, and Schuyler Sutton.

Severna Park Falcons

1998 record: 18-1

Coach: Lil Shelton

Top players: Erin Shaklee, Sr., F; Kim Lawton, Sr., G; Nicki Barnes, Jr., F; Lynsey Bateman, Jr., MF; Katie Reim, Sr., MF; Jenn Zinck, Jr., D; Jen Mistretta, Sr., D.

Outlook: A lot of new names bring the same old expectations as the mighty Falcons prime for a third straight state title and their 12th overall. Four first-team All-County players led by Metro Player of the Year Sara Zuckerman were lost to graduation, but Shelton has a strong core of returnees to go with a talented group of newcomers to keep the Falcons rolling. Shaklee (county-high 15 goals and eight assists) will be right back in front redirecting shots and pouncing on all rebounds. Barnes shined along the left side last season and will be asked to do more this season. Lynsey is an outstanding distributor in the middle with Zinck another strong presence. Shelton's recipe is simple: establish shorter goals to work toward bigger ones with the overall emphasis on having fun.

Southern Bulldogs

1998 record: 5-5-2

Coach: Carolyn Knowles

Top players: Alaina Nutwell, Jr., D; Kori Talbott, Jr., F; Katie Lacey, Jr., MF; Renae Toney, Jr., F/MF; Cindy Trott, Sr., G; Brooke Wilson, Jr., F; Brooke Carroll, Sr., D; Samantha Chaney, Sr., D.

Outlook: A defensive group that kept offensive powers Annapolis and Chesapeake in check with 0-0 ties last fall returns, but Knowles may shift some players around to strengthen the offense. Nutwell, a second-team All-County performer last season, is set at sweeper. Tough to get by, she combines good speed with the skills to match and a 100 percent approach. The Bulldogs, 0-3-2 in one-goal games last year, would like to get more consistent scoring to win the close ones. Talbott, Wilson and Toney are fast to the ball and aggressive. Enthusiasm and team unity may also play a role. Knowles had 13 players attend a Future Stars camp in Pennsylvania over the summer.

South River Seahawks

1998 record: 8-4-2

Coach: Laura Gerrior

Top players: Jackie Colacicco, Jr., MF; Lauren Duckman, Sr., F; Kristen Sinnett, Sr., M; Raina Edelstein, Jr., D; Meredith Barry, Jr., D; Anne Cline, Jr., F.

Outlook: No team in the county has improved more drastically in recent years than the Seahawks, who went from one win in 1996 to five wins in 1997 (Gerrior's first as coach) to eight last fall. Six returning starters will try to help collect even more wins this fall, but Gerrior must first find an answer to the void left by first-team All-County goalie Amie Ward. Sophomores Jen Davison and Kristin Cousin -- both sophomores -- are new to the goalie position and working hard. Fortunately, there's some strong defenders returning in Edelstein and Barry. Gerrior wants to get Colacicco's strong skills around the ball more, so will drop her to center midfield after using her up front last year. Duckman and Cline will work.

Pub Date: 9/02/99

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