Two of the greatest players in Anne Arundel County history along with two of the most successful head coaches headline the 2020 induction class for the Chesapeake Chapter of US Lacrosse Hall of Fame.
Andy Ross and Stephy Samaras, both of whom enjoyed highly decorated careers at the Division I level, will be enshrined. They will be joined by Dave Gehrdes and Clay White, two of the winningest coaches in Maryland high school lacrosse.
US Lacrosse recently delegated Prince George’s County to the Chesapeake Chapter of US Lacrosse and that will be recognized for the first time this year. Caitlyn McFadden Phipps, one of the all-time leading scorers in Maryland women’s lacrosse history, rounds out the Class of 2020.
Samaras was a four-year starter on defense at Virginia, helping the program to a pair of national championship game appearances (1998, 1999). The Annapolis High graduate was named first team All-American by the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association in 1999 and 2000.
Samaras, who concluded her collegiate career as Virginia’s all-time leader with 122 caused turnovers, spent two subsequent seasons as a member for the United States National Development team.
Samaras was also a four-year starter at Annapolis High under Gehrdes, earning first team All-County honors as a sophomore, junior and senior. She was an integral member of the school’s first girls’ lacrosse state championship team in 1996, which went undefeated. She also played soccer and basketball for the Panthers.
Samaras has enjoyed a long and successful coaching career, starting as an assistant at Yale shortly after graduating from Virginia. She was the first full-time head coach of women’s lacrosse at Quinnipiac in Connecticut and later spent three seasons in the same role at Richmond.
Samaras, who also served as head coach of the Wales and Greek national teams, is now back at her alma mater. The Crofton resident was hired as head coach of girls’ lacrosse at Annapolis High in December 2018 and will be entering her second season at the helm.
It is fitting that Samaras and Gehrdes are going in together since they are so intertwined. Gehrdes coached Samaras at Annapolis then later hired her to fill the role he once held.
Gehrdes took over as head coach of Annapolis girls lacrosse in 1993 and led the program to unprecedented success. The Panthers captured three state championships (1996, 1998, 1999), 10 region titles and five county crowns during the 23-year tenure of Gehrdes, who never suffered a losing season or even a .500 one.
Gehrdes retired following the 2015 campaign with 308 career wins. He was a four-time Capital Gazette Newspapers Coach of the Year, sent dozens of players onto the collegiate ranks and will cherish the opportunity to coach all three of his daughters – Katie, Emily and Erin.
Carin Peterson, who compiled 366 victories and 12 state championships in 25 seasons at Severna Park, is the only Anne Arundel County girls’ lacrosse coach to achieve more success.
Gehrdes also amassed more than 200 wins in 20 years as Annapolis wrestling coach and more than 100 wins in 17 seasons as boys’ soccer coach. He was only the third athletic director in the span of half a century at Annapolis, following in the footsteps of Al Laramore and Fred Stauffer.
While Gehrdes spent four decades in various capacities at Annapolis High, White served 43 straight seasons as a boys’ lacrosse coach in the county – five as an assistant and 38 as a head coach.
That incredible run came to an end this past spring when White retired after an illustrious 33-year tenure at Broadneck High. The Pasadena resident previously spent five seasons as head coach at Southern High and concluded his career with a remarkable record of 455-198.
White led Broadneck to 408 victories and four state championships, which came consecutively in 1992-93 and again in 1996-97. The Bruins only sustained one losing season under the direction of White, whose contributions to the sport go well beyond coaching.
White was a founding father of the Maryland State Lacrosse Coaches Association in 1996 and served as its president for 23 years. Along with former Andover and North County coach Jon Appelt, White created the Catonsville Indoor League that provided a winter outlet for players from across the state for decades.
White took pride in personally writing letters of recommendation or making phone calls to help hundreds of Broadneck players continue their careers at the collegiate level.
White spent most of his teaching career at Central Special School in Edgewater and Marley Glen Special School in Glen Burnie. A special affinity for special needs students developed during that time continued at Broadneck as White has been the school’s only unified bowling coach. In fact, the Clay White Award goes annually to one allied or unified athlete at Broadneck.
Ross ranks alongside goalie Tim McGeeney (Loyola-Maryland) as arguably the greatest boys’ lacrosse player to come out of North County High. The fleet midfielder was a two-time, first team All-County selection and would go on to even greater success at the Naval Academy.
A classic two-way midfielder and clearing machine, Ross was a three-time All-American at Navy during the early years of the Richie Meade head coaching era.
An unselfish attitude and willingness to do all the dirty work between the lines is a major reason why Ross was a two-time member of the United States national team. He helped Team USA capture the Federation of International Lacrosse world championship in 1998, the year after graduating from the academy.
Ross put down the stick for three years while attending flight school at Pensacola Naval Air Station then earning certification with the C2 Fleet Replacement Squadron out of Norfolk, Va.
In 2002, Ross made a comeback and was once again selected for Team USA, which repeated as world champions by beating Canada in Perth, Australia.
Ross, who served just over 10 years as a Naval aviator, earned a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Baltimore and has worked in the financial industry for many years.
McFadden Phipps grew up in Phoenix, Maryland and was a Baltimore Sun All-Metro selection at Notre Dame Prep. Her mother, Mary Clare “M.C.” McFadden, was the longtime head coach at Maryvale Prep then later Stevenson University and is a member of the Baltimore Chapter of US Lacrosse Hall of Fame. Her father, Mickey McFadden, prepped at Loyola-Blakefield and is a member of the William & Mary Athletic Hall of Fame.
McFadden Phipps was a standout midfielder for the University of Maryland from 2007 through 2010, earning first team All-American honors from the Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association as a junior and senior. She was a two-time Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year and was presented with the prestigious Tewaaraton Award as the nation’s top player in 2010.
McFadden Phipps still ranks fifth all-time at Maryland with 110 career assists and is Top 15 with 259 points. She was named Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA Tournament after leading the Terrapins to the 2010 national championship, the program’s first since 2001.
McFadden Phipps was a longtime member of the United States national team, earning a gold medal at the 2009 FIL World Cup in Prague, Czech Republic. She is married to Annapolis native Brian Phipps, a standout goalkeeper at Severn School, Maryland and with the Chesapeake Bayhawks.
Chesapeake Chapter of US Lacrosse Hall of Fame
When: January 23, 2020. Where: Annapolis Elks Lodge No. 662