Offense rules in field hockey COUNTY FIELD HOCKEY AT A GLANCE

September 13, 1992|By Roch Eric Kubatko and Steven Kivinski, John Harris | Roch Eric Kubatko and Steven Kivinski, John Harris,Staff Writers

Scoring, or at least the attempt to do so, could be on the rise among county field hockey teams this fall.

As coaches scrutinized their players during practices and scrimmages this summer, many of them saw the potential for more offense from their squads.

Broadneck's Phoebe Kelly: "They're doing a lot of scoring lately. There isn't anyone who can't score."

Severna Park's Lil Shelton: "The attack is going to be very strong. We're going for lots of goals this year."

Old Mill's Jo Funk: "I'm really looking forward to the team scoring many more goals than they did in the past."

St. Mary's Lisa Howe: "I have a lot more scorers and a more-balanced front line."

And this from Annapolis' Tammy Janoskie: "Our goal this year is to rack up the goals."

Will the 1-0 game become a thing of the past, like the Hula-Hoop and eight-track tapes? Stay tuned.

A few things haven't changed, of course, like Severna Park being favored to return to the state playoffs. But other teams are capable of doing the same.

The following is a closer look at the county's field hockey teams:

4A League

So what if Severna Park lost four members of the first-team All-County pool? The program is festering with talented players like front-liners Gabrielle Cormier, Colleen Gately and Tressa Campbell and midfielders Elizabeth Wilson and Katie Kuch. Cormier and Kuch were second-team All-County a year ago.

You want defense? The Falcons offer seniors Tracy McGarry, Jenny Collins and Melissa Ventrudo, plus returning keeper Rachel Kidwell. Two other keepers, junior Karen Schultz and senior Kristie Hartman, will be kept on the roster.

Among the more promising newcomers are sophomores Megan Smith (midfield) and Diane Mooney (wing) and junior Mary Jo Mahoney (defense).

"I've got a lot of speed up front. They move to the ball nicely and they know what to do with it when they get to it," Shelton said.

"The defense is pretty strong and the midfield is strong. They feed the front-line players well."

The Falcons won their first 15 games before losing to Westminster, 1-0, on a disputed goal in the 4A state final. They'll be trying for the school's sixth title.

"I think the girls this year realize what it takes to get to the tournament," Shelton said, "and they understand what we're trying to get them to do to get there."

Old Mill got there last year, but lost to Severna Park, 1-0, in the semifinal. The Patriots then lost four starting defensive players, including first-team All-County keeper Kim Greenlee and Karin Gleason.

"That's our big concern," said Funk, who has little else to worry about. The offense returns inners Kerith Spicknall and Amy Cox and wings Aimee Buschman and Maryte Uleckas, and the midfield is in decent shape, as well.

Even the replacements on defense, like seniors Jillian Hewitt and Jenny Tate and junior keepers Terri Appleman -- the probable starter -- and Kelli Knode have shown promise.

"Practicing every day with an experienced offense coming down on them makes a difference," Funk said. "Hewitt and Tate played a fair amount last year, so it's not like I lost all four [starters] and had nothing to replace them with. I think we're looking good."

So is Broadneck, which also fell victim to Severna Park last year, this time in the regional finals, 2-0. The roster has undergone some changes, but Kelly still has reason to be optimistic.

"We'll be a contender," she said. "I imagine a lot of people are in the same boat this year, a lot of new players, a lot of talent."

Seniors Karen Chesley and Melissa Monalto are back at the midfield, and senior Hillary Frye, who started half of the games in goal, also has returned. None of the other players started last year, but Kelly said, "I've got an awful lot of talent."

That description fits Annapolis perfectly. The Panthers have more depth than Janoskie can remember in her six years at the helm.

"This is the first year that I feel like I have two players per position," she said. "I feel confident that they're going to do a good job when I put them on the field. Before, I haven't had the numbers. I'm kind of excited about that."

Her front line is potent with seniors Shannon Cordell, Heather Knudson and Nicole DesChamps, the latter displaying the ability to become "one of the top scorers," Janoskie said. The defense is led by Lauren Fienstein -- "she has awesome stickwork," Janoskie said -- and goalie Kristen Butler, the Panthers' Most Valuable Player last season.

Annapolis was the top seed in the Region III playoffs, but lost to fourth-seeded La Plata, 1-0, in the semifinal. Janoskie said she feels "something is going to click this year."

After reaching the playoffs in 1991, Arundel coach Clint Gosnell expects to see his club perform at an even higher level.

"We've got a quality team this year. No real superstars, but lots of good role players," said Gosnell, whose Wildcats went 6-6-2, losing to Old Mill, 2-1, in the regional playoffs.

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