A year ago, it was the Dickinson College football team looking to spoil Western Maryland's homecoming affair.
They didn't. Western Maryland College running back Eric Frees made sure of that with a touchdown run with just under a minute left to give the Terrors a 14-7 win.
This year, it's Western Maryland looking to put a damper on Dickinson's festivities when the Terrors travel to Carlisle, Pa., Saturday.
There is much more at stake here than a party. With both teams unbeaten in the Centennial Football Conference -- Western Maryland is 3-0 while Dickinson is 2-0 -- the winner of Saturday's matchup will have the upper hand in the conference race. WMC coach Dale Sprague knows it won't be easy.
"It should be an interesting matchup. We havea lot of respect for the Dickinson team," Sprague said.
"No doubtwe're underdogs in this game. It's their homecoming, and they are going to be fired up, but I know our kids will be, too. We're going to have to play the game of our lives."
The game features a pair of teams with contrasting offensive styles. Dickinson is a big-play team with a lot of explosive offensive weapons while Western Maryland relies on a ball-control offense with Frees carrying much of the load.
"They (Dickinson) have a lot of ways to beat you. Their quarterback (Stu) James runs the option well and can also throw. Their tailbacks have been explosive, and their fullback (Geoff) O'Donnell has also been running the ball well," Sprague said.
"We're going to have to do the same thing we've done all year -- control the ball. We'll also need a strong defensive effort."
In other sports this weekend:
* Liberty High will be the site of the Central Maryland Conference cross country meet Saturday.
Westminster is the favorite in the boys' race, while the Frederick girls likely will determine if the Owls come home with a sweep.
"The boys are running well, and I don't seeanybody in the con
ference a threat. We simply have too many goodrunners," Westminster coach Jim Gilford said.
"The girls should come down to us and Frederick. They've had our number lately, but we're in reach of them.
"Stephanie (Morningstar) is the favorite," Gilford said. "Two keys will be whether some other runners out there in the conference can finish ahead of Frederick's top runners and our middle group must be able to compete with their (Frederick's) three andfour runners."
* It seems every fall there is a week when the Carroll high school football teams struggle -- and struggle miserably. Last week was it for 1991.
All five teams lost. Westminster gave up58 points; South Carroll and Francis Scott Key were blanked, while Liberty and North Carroll both lost by more than two touchdowns.
More numbers. Carroll teams were outscored a whopping 188-44 last Friday. Only one team, South Carroll, has a winning record this season, while Westminster and Francis Scott Key are without a victory.
SouthCarroll's 27-0 loss at Linganore was its first CMC loss of the year.The Cavaliers are now 4-2 overall, 2-1 in the conference.
They can get right back in the thick of the CMC race with a win over Thomas Johnson (2-0 in the CMC) Friday and with some help from North Carroll-- which will get its chance at Linganore (3-0 in the CMC) Friday.
* The Western Maryland College volleyball team will be host for theNorth-South Classic on Friday and Saturday.
Competing in the tournament along with the host Green Terrors will be Gettysburg (Pa.) College, Bridgewater (Va.) College, Carnegie Mellon University of Pennsylvania, Gallaudet College, Mary Washington College in Virginia, College of Notre Dame, Salisbury State University, Washington and Lee University in Virginia and York (Pa.) College.
Gettysburg looks to be the favorite with a 29-2 season record. The Green Terrors' record stands at 19-11.
The classic will get started at 6 p.m. Friday with the championship slated for 4:15 p.m. Saturday.
(All times p.m. unless indicated)
* Field hockey: Western Maryland at Dickinson, 3
* Junior varsity football: South Hagerstown at Francis Scott Key, 7; Thomas Johnson at South Carroll, 7; Westminster at Frederick, 7
* Freshman football: Thomas Johnson at South Carroll, 5:30; Westminster at Frederick, 5:30
* Girls soccer:Francis Scott Key at Brunswick, JV at 5:30, varsity at 7; Thomas Johnson at Liberty, 5:30 and 7; North Carroll at Westminster, 5:30 and 7; South Carroll at Linganore, 5:30 and 7; Western Maryland at Gettysburg, 4
* Men's soccer: Western Maryland at Johns Hopkins, 7
* Volleyball: Western Maryland at Washington, 7
* Field hockey: Liberty at Westminster, JV at 5:30, varsity at 7; Frederick atNorth Carroll, 4
* Junior varsity football: Liberty at Southern (Anne Arundel), 5; Linganore at North Carroll, 7
* Freshman football: Linganore at North Carroll, 5:30
* Boys soccer: Thomas Johnson at Liberty, JV at 5:30, varsity at 7; Westminster at Linganore, 5:30 and 7