Three weeks into the high school soccer season, it's finally official: Saah Johnson is a Scorpion.
The former under-15 national team player, a junior, enrolled Friday and was on hand for Oakland Mills' 1-0 victory over Atholton Tuesday, although he did not play. He probably won't sit long.
Johnson, with 14 goals, was the top scorer for Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference champion Mount St. Joseph last season, his second at the southwest Baltimore Catholic school.
But tuition became too much for the first-team All-State striker, said Gaels coach Mike St. Martin.
Questions of residency have held up Johnson's enrollment at Oakland Mills. He has lived in the Oakland Mills school district for the past two years. A native of Liberia, he has been in the United States for six years.
Johnson was in the pool of the top 30 players in the country at age 14 and played in the state Olympic Development Program for three years - but not this year. He's also on the Potomac Cougars, an under-17 club team.
"I think he'll give us an added dimension," Oakland Mills coach Don Shea said. "He's been a proven goal scorer."
Oakland Mills, 3-0 so far and ranked No. 15, has won 11 state boys soccer championships, more than any other school, and Johnson said he wants to help the Scorpions win a 12th.
Johnson is not the only outstanding transfer picked up by Oakland Mills this season. Abraham Larrobra was the stopper last season for High Point, a Prince George's County team that made it to the Class 4A state semifinals.
The 6-foot-1, solidly built junior, who has started every game this season at right fullback for the Scorpions, came to this country from Argentina almost two years ago.
"He can flight the ball 45 yards, can goal-kick to midfield and is a creative player," said Shea. "So far, he's adapted to our system well."
Youth serves Glenelg well
Glenelg's field hockey team won a crucial early-season test Tuesday, beating Centennial, 2-1. The victory kept the Gladiators undefeated (5-0 overall, 2-0 league) despite starting six sophomores.
"We were apprehensive about playing Centennial so early because we're so young," said coach Ginger Kincaid. "But we have a lot of kids playing year-round hockey, and I've been pleased with our ability to score. All five games, we've scored more than one goal."
The six sophomores are forward Amanda Yanulevich, midfielders Terri Coover, Jenn Cochran and Katie Narron, sweeper Carly Barron and goalkeeper Aly Blum. The two senior captains are Stephanie Capps and Kirsten Krauss.
Ex-Scorpions in Canada
Anthony Breland and Murray Graves, two of Oakland Mills' all-time great basketball players who shared Player of the Year honors as seniors in 1999, will play for the University College of Cape Breton Capers in Sydney, Canada, this season.
Breland, a 6-foot-6 shooting guard, was a USA Today honorable mention All-American in high school and a first-team all-conference and second-team all-regional player at Baltimore County Community College-Catonsville, where he played two years.
Graves is a 6-6 power forward who combined with Breland to average 45 points a game as high school seniors. They have played together 10 years and were scouted in summer ball.
The Mount Hebron, River Hill and Wilde Lake boys cross country teams will compete in the Bull Run Invitational elite division at Hereford at 11 a.m. Saturday.
Wilde Lake finished second in last week's Howard County Striders Invitational. Mount Hebron's Matt Sanders won the individual title.
Mount Hebron's girls, winners of the Howard County Striders Invitational, also will run in the Hereford meet's elite division at 11:40 a.m.
In Tuesday's editions, retired Calvert Hall coach Bill Karpovich (422 wins) should have been identified as the first boys soccer coach in the metro area to win 300 games. On Tuesday, Severna Park's Don Gregg became the first coach for a public school team to win 300 games.