It's a rather large weekend for the soccer teams at Navy, Towson State and Frostburg State.
The Midshipmen take on Army tomorrow (5:30 p.m.) at Dewey Field and their annual clash takes on added significance because both are matched in the Patriot League for the first time. Navy's 4-1 mark is the best in the league, and if coach Greg Myers' team can beat Army and Bucknell Nov. 2, it will host the Patriot playoffs Nov. 9-10.
Navy was 9-10-4 in 1990, its first losing record since 1981, and plebes have helped improve that mark to its current 10-4.
Doug Williams, a goalie from Baton Rouge, La., has the best goals-allowed average in the Patriot League, and San Antonio native Seth Walters is Navy's top point-getter, with four goals and eight assists.
Virginian Dan Ensley has started eight games in the back, and Georgian Brent Boyle adds to depth at midfield.
Navy is ranked No. 9 in the South Atlantic region, one spot behind Towson State.
The Tigers host their TSU Invitational this weekend, and it won't be as easy to take as it was the last two years. In Saturday's semifinals, Howard plays Philadelphia Textile at noon, and Towson State meets Virginia Tech at 2:30. The consolation (noon) and championship (2:30) games are Sunday.
Always difficult to beat at home, Towson State (10-3-2) raced to a 3-0 lead over Brooklyn College before settling for a 3-2 victory yesterday. The Tigers are 3-1-1 in the East Coast Conference and in position to make it three titles in a row, but they won't have the home-field advantage this time. They're hoping that current leader UMBC wins the right to host the Nov. 9-10 tournament.
Joe Layfield, the senior from Calvert Hall who's the state's top Division I scorer, had a goal and an assist yesterday, giving him 11 and 3, respectively, for the season.
Frostburg State can take a giant step toward its first NCAA Division III tournament berth since 1983 with a win at South Region power Bethany (W.Va.) Saturday. The Bobcats ran their record to 15-0 yesterday with a 6-0 romp at Shenandoah, becoming the first Division III visitor to win there since 1986. Mark Urban, a junior forward from DeMatha, had three goals, giving him 19 and eight assists for the season. Coach Jay Hegeman's team has a 59-4 goals advantage on the season.
* A fast start in September got the Hopkins football team plenty of attention, but cross country has been the Blue Jays' most successful program this fall.
Coach Jim Grogan's men's team won the Dickinson Invitational and was second to UMBC at the Metro Invitational. John Robinson is the leader and a definite favorite to go to the NCAA Division I championships, and fellow seniors Manny Hostin and Craig Freeman have been joined by junior Pete Gliatto and freshman John Watkins on a consistently strong five.
Using five sophomores and two freshmen from seven different states, the women won both of the aforementioned invitationals. Cecilia Mendez (California) and collegiate rookies Saori Dan (New York) and Katia von Tiesenhausen (Alabama) have been solid additions to a lineup that returned Tatiana Aguire (Florida), Andrea Wagner (Virginia), Carol Moylan (New Jersey) and Maren Olsen (Pennsylvania).
Hopkins last won the Middle Atlantic Conference title in 1979, when coach Eleanor Simonsick ran for the Blue Jays. The challenge Saturday is the University Athletic Association championships at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh, where the Hopkins women will chase Brandeis and Chicago, and the men tangle with traditional NCAA powers like Rochester, Brandeis and the host team.
* The Johns Hopkins-Georgetown football game at Homewood Field Saturday (2 p.m.) could take a while. The Hoyas have the top-ranked passing offense in Division III -- better than 332 yards per game -- and the Blue Jays are averaging 226 yards after John Guglielmo was held to 100 yards in last week's loss at Muhlenberg.
That 14-8 setback severely hurt Hopkins' chances in the Centennial Football Conference, where the key game this Saturday (1:30 p.m.) sends Franklin & Marshall to Western Maryland. The only CFC loss for both came against unbeaten Dickinson, the Green Terrors' 28-25 setback in Carlisle, Pa., effectively ending their postseason hopes.
Western Maryland's season won't end Nov. 16 against Hopkins, however, since all systems are go for its junket to Moscow next March 17.
* Penn's Damon Young, a senior wide receiver from McDonogh, had a career-high six catches for 65 yards against Lehigh . . . Penn's soccer goalie is Glenn Meininger, a senior from Oakland Mills who was a recent Ivy League Player of the Week . . . The cross country teams from Mount St. Mary's will be at the Northeast Conference championships at Robert Morris Saturday.