Co-Player of the Year
Courtney Thornton, St. Mary's, Sr., MF: Flashy? Thornton knows the game too well to have a need for that, always positioned right where she needs to be at center midfield, often a step ahead of everyone else on the field. Smart and aggressive with skills polished to near-perfection, she was a dominating presence as the catalyst of the Saints' transition game. "Courtney works harder than anybody I've ever coached," said St. Mary's coach Patti Lavell. "She's a perfectionist; smart with natural physical ability. And she's also very humble." The three-year starter finished the season with six goals and two assists, but was just as important from a defensive standpoint and as a team leader. "She always had everyone ready to play and also made everyone around her that much better," said Lavell. A two-year member of Team Maryland and the U.S. Field Hockey Association's Futures Program, Thornton has accepted a full scholarship at the University of Maryland.
Co-Player of the Year
Erin Shaklee, Severna Park, Sr., F: No player in the county produced in the scoring circle quite like Shaklee. The Falcons captured their third straight Class 4A state title and 12th overall with Shaklee in the middle of it all, totaling 23 goals and 22 assists for a school-record 45 points. With the stellar senior season, Shaklee, a three-year starter at center forward, also became the program's all-time career scoring leader with 46 goals and 33 assists for 79 points. She had the ability to dodge past defenders in tight quarters to get off shots, could score in front on redirections and rebounds, and had the awareness to push a pass across to an open teammate. "Erin knows where the goal is," said Severna Park coach Lil Shelton. "A lot of players see a shot going on goal and stand there and watch. She doesn't; she pursues it. She does fantastic things with the ball." In leading the county in scoring for a second straight season, Shaklee, a Team Maryland and Futures veteran, finished with five multiple-goal games.
Coach of the Year
Patti Lavell, St. Mary's: A 10-win season and semifinal run in the powerful Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland was impressive. The 13-game unbeaten streak (9-0-4) in the middle of the season was nice, too. And who could forget that huge, 2-1 upset over Severna Park that Friday night in October. But ask Lavell what made this season special for her and the Saints (10-4-4) and she'll stay away from all the numbers. "This team has been together for a long time and we really wanted to do it together. There's a lot of good friends, team spirit and a family environment," she said. After two losses to start the season, the Saints, with 16 seniors, went 10-1-4 before falling to St. Paul's, 2-0, in the league semifinal. Lavell, in her sixth season, was able to get the most out of her veteran group by relying on team unity, always playing hard and enjoying the ride.
Meg Atkinson, Broadneck, Sr., MF: Bringing a strong passion for the game every time out, Atkinson used her excellent stick skills and speed to move the ball quickly through the midfield. A three-year varsity player and team captain, she finished with eight goals and seven assists, but was in on many other goals as the starting point of the Bruins' attack.
Nicki Barnes, Severna Park, Jr., F: With exceptional speed and the stick skills to match, Barnes brought plenty of razzle-dazzle to the left-wing position. She finished the season with 21 goals and 12 assists, saving her best for the latter part of the season. Fast around the corner, she was consistently able to send crosses into the circle or score on her own. Barnes also played a vital role on the state-champion Falcons' penalty corners as the first passer.
Lynsey Bateman, Severna Park, Jr., MF: The Falcons' dangerous attack couldn't get started without a dominating presence at midfield. That's what Bateman provided in her first season starting at center midfield. She finished the season with five goals and seven assists, but just as important was her ablility to win balls in the middle of the field and then distribute them effectively. Bateman was awarded the state-championship game ball after the Falcons' 2-1 win over Whitman.
Kelli Bowerman, Severna Park, So., D: If there was a question going into the season of whether the Falcons would be able to defend their Class 4A state crown, it would have come on defense, where they lost three starters. Enter Bowerman. The center back showed the poise of a veteran in her first season of varsity play, becoming the glue of the unit with good anticipation, a strong drive and effective passes from the back. She finished the season with one goal and five assists.
Jackie Colacicco, South River, Jr., MF: Getting to the ball first was a Colacicco specialty for the Seahawks, who liked to push up fast and counted on her heavily as their primary transition player. A three-year starter, Colacicco possessed a hard shot that resulted in 11 goals this fall to help the Seahawks reach their first region title game. She also had the ability to dodge past defenders, distributing two assists.
Raina Edelstein, South River, Jr., D: With inexperienced youth in the cage this fall, the Seahawks had to have a cohesive defensive unit to hold off opposing attacks. Edelstein helped them do just that at her right-back spot. Edelstein's feisty play enabled her to interfere with almost everything an opposing attack sent to her side. She had consistent strong drives and, with her good recovery speed, wasn't afraid to press up to help keep the ball at the other end.
Jen Franklin, Chesapeake, Sr., F: Tremendously fast with the ball, Franklin was the Cougars' spark at her center-forward position. Creative inside the circle, she had a powerful shot and could also scrap for a goal in close. In her second varsity season, Franklin finished with 13 goals and six assists to lead the Cougars into the county championship game.
Kristin Gaudreau, St. Mary's, Sr., F: Big goals for the Saints this season often came from Gaudreau: two against Severna Park in a 2-1 upset win; game-winners against Garrison Forest and Arundel. She finished with seven goals in all, but scoring was only part of what Gaudreau brought to the field at her wing position. A strong two-way performer, it wasn't surprising to see her inside the defensive circle, marking players and carrying the ball out.
Pam Hemmings, Chesapeake, Sr., D: Simply put, Hemmings always got the job done as she made a fine adjustment to the center back position this fall after two years on the right side. Her all-around sense of the game, good defensive instincts, fine stickwork and consistency were the main ingredients in leading the Cougars to 11 shutouts. Hemmings, who also had two goals and five assists, always set the pace in the Cougars' runs during practice and it showed up at game time with her ability to go non-stop at both ends of the field.
Addie Lewis, St. Mary's, Sr., G: A onetime goalie in ice hockey, Lewis relied on her intensity, aggressiveness and quick feet to turn back shots in her second varsity season with the Saints. Standing her ground well in the highly-competitive IAAM's Applebee Division, she saved 123 of the 139 shots that came her way.
Jill Marano, Arundel, Jr., MF: A gifted natural athlete who also excels in basketball, Marano developed field hockey sense and more polished technique in her second season playing the sport. The result was nine goals, eight assists and some dominating play at midfield. Marano was always around the ball and doing something positive with it. With the team's hardest drive, she also was the key on penalty corners, whether she was distributing or receiving them.
Meg Myers, Severn, Sr., D: A three-year starter, Myers took her game to a higher level with a smooth transition to the center back position this fall. Replacing the graduated Bif Moorshead, a 1998 All-Metro pick, Myers was the catalyst in getting the Admirals' transition game in gear. A quick stick and good positioning made it difficult to get past her and she relied on finesse to bring the ball up quickly.
K.C. Swieconek, Broadneck, Sr., D: Providing interference to just about everything an opposing attack sent her way, Swieconek was able to stand her ground at the left link position with speed, anticipation and aggressive play. With a good feel for the game, she also knew when to slide over to provide support for the rest of the defense. Once she won the ball, Swieconek had strong clears or the ability to work the ball to start the Bruins in transition.
The Baltimore Sun 1999 All-Anne Arundel County field hockey team was selected by Glenn P. Graham after consultation with The Sun staff and area coaches.