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Girls soccer: Player, Coach of the Year

Archbishop Spalding's Erica Page is the All-Metro Player of the Year for girls soccer.
Archbishop Spalding's Erica Page is the All-Metro Player of the Year for girls soccer. (Baltimore Sun photo by Kenneth K. Lam)

Player of the Year

Erica Page

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Archbishop Spalding, forward

The repeat first-team All-Metro selection brought leadership, poise and strong skills to the field in leading the No. 1 Cavaliers (19-1-3) to the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference championship. A four-year starter and two-year captain, Page scored 16 goals and added 17 assists this season to close out her career with 56 goals and a program-best 42 assists.

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The Maryland-bound standout was a key part of two IAAM A Conference championship teams, with the program's first coming in her sophomore year. After the Cavaliers graduated the program's most prolific class, Page became the go-to player on offense this season, showing an ability to score on her own and set up teammates when she drew extra attention. She opened the season at less than 100 percent, recovering from anterior cruciate ligament surgery that she underwent in the early part of 2008, but she was still productive.

"Erica is a smart player and student of the game," Spalding coach Bob Dieterle said. "Her ability to understand the game, read opponents and make adjustments over the course of a game was very fine this year. She was as good without the ball as she was with it."

Page, who has a program-best 18 game-winning goals, played in 85 games (starting 82) and logged 5,231 minutes. In the Cavaliers' three playoff wins this season, she had two goals and three assists.

Coach of the Year

Bob Dieterle

Archbishop Spalding

The Cavaliers opened the season full of questions. Who would replace All-Metro Player of the Year Christine Nairn and her instant scoring? How long before senior captain Erica Page returned to top form after surgery earlier in the year? Could goalkeeper Jocelyn McCoy fill the void left by All-Metro four-year standout Karen Blocker?

Dieterle, who relied on a sturdy, experienced defense and more balance on offense, instilled confidence and a sound structure. The result for the No. 1 Cavaliers was a 19-1-3 mark that culminated in a 2-0 win over McDonogh for the program's second Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference crown in three years.

"We definitely had some questions that needed to be answered, but that's high school sports, and every coach knows it's going to happen," he said. "We just told the kids, 'We lost some great players, but we also have a very good team right here.' You could see that in their attitudes -- they were confident."

Dieterle, who has an 108-21-12 mark in seven seasons, was quick to credit his assistant, Bob Wagner, and junior varsity coach, Dave Bukowski.

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