A four-goal barrage, two of the scores by junior striker Andrew Ennema in just over two minutes late in the first half, propelled No. 15 Severna Park to a 4-0 boys soccer victory over Glen Burnie last night at George Roberts Field.
The visiting Gophers (2-1) last played at Severna Park in last year's Anne Arundel County championship game, upsetting Chesapeake, 2-1, in overtime. It was the school's first county title since 1977.
"We lost a lot to graduation and have only two seniors this season," said Gophers coach Ron Smith, an assistant last year and a member of that 1977 team. "This is a very young team, and the inexperience showed at the end of the first half. We haven't seen anything like this so far."
What the Gophers saw were rapid-fire goals in the last 6 1/2 minutes of the first half after both teams had been lackluster on attack.
Junior back Nolan Wiles scored the initial goal on a cross. Ditto by Kevin Camponeschi about 35 seconds later, and then Ennema tallied the last two goals for a huge halftime lead of a game played in a steady rain.
"We haven't scored goals that quick this year," said coach Don Gregg, whose Falcons are 3-1-1. "But I guess the wing-cross shooting drill we worked on over and over in practice paid off."
Ennema's first goal came with 4:19 remaining in the half. And just 16 seconds later, he took a feed from Camponeschi to make the score 4-0.
"We have a sophomore keeper in John Poist, who has to learn when to come out and make plays, along with other younger defenders, like junior stopper George Norris and sophomore Eric Whisman," said Smith. "But overall, our kids kept their composure and their class."
Poist finished with seven saves, two of them in the first half, when the Falcons outshot the Gophers, 11-3.
In contrast, Falcons goalie Scott McGuire was called on only twice to make saves, and fellow junior keeper Ryan Schell stopped four shots in the second half as Gregg unloaded his bench.
"We got a chance to play everybody, but I had told our goalies before the game that each was going to play a half," said Gregg. "We didn't score in the second half, because new players were in there, and the ones who got in for the starters had the pressure of trying to preserve the shutout, and they did. That kind of play can push the starters and help us in the long run."
Glen Burnie, outshot 17-12 for the game, could not take advantage of four corner kicks.
No. 4 McDonogh 3, No. 5 Loyola 2: The Eagles had a three-goal lead with nearly 20 minutes left but had to hold off their visiting Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference rival.
Brian Yi led McDonogh (7-2-1, 4-1) with two goals and an assist, and Matt Beckman scored the third goal against Loyola keeper Amir Karimian (nine saves). Loyola's Kevin Mezzadra and Matt Curran scored during the final nine minutes, but the Dons (4-3-1, 1-2) couldn't find a tying goal.
It was 1-0 seven minutes into the game after Yi hit a 10-yard cross-body volley off a corner kick.
Beckman made it 2-0 three minutes into the second half.