Dulaney has revenge motive in title game against Centennial Lions must overcome Eagles' experience edge Girls soccer

November 20, 1992|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,Staff Writer

The road to the Class 4A-3A state championship game has been a little simpler for this year's Dulaney girls soccer team, and this time the Lions hope their journey won't end in vain.

Their foe -- top-ranked Centennial (14-1) -- is the same Eagles team that vanquished Girls soccer

Dulaney, 4-1, a year ago. The defending champions have outscored their opponents, 64-13, and return two 1991 first-team All-Metro players in striker Vicky Brunt (15 goals, 11 assists) and midfielder Natalie Rich.

The two players are summer league teammates on the six-time State Cup champion Columbia Crusaders with Dulaney's Aimee Vaughan, a 1991 second-team All-Metro pick who has scored 37 of the Lions' 110 goals, with 13 assists.

"I think it's going to be a heck of a game, but it could be lopsided if either team is down emotionally or psychologically," said Dulaney coach Cathy Schmidt. "The fact that it's a rematch has our team motivated, and I think having been there last year should help them."

Centennial's only loss was 4-1 to Hammond, which earlier had downed the Lions, 2-1. Among the Eagles' most impressive wins is a 4-0 shutout of Class 2A-1A state finalist Oakland Mills, which beat Hammond twice.

Hammond coach Dave Guetler gave the nod to Centennial because of the Eagles' tougher schedule and the fact that Rich )) had missed part of the game against his squad for disciplinary reasons.

"Dulaney has a bunch of powerful kickers-- more powerful than we are," said Centennial coach Rick Pizzaro, who thinks the game could turn into an offensive battle. "We held Vaughan to one goal last year, and if we can do that well again, we'll do all right."

The Eagles, who have eight shutouts, bank on sweeper Paige Nettlebladt and stopper Shara Boonshaft, who has a strong foot.

Centennial may have an edge in experience because Dulaney's starting lineup includes just two seniors, a freshman, four juniors and four sophomores.

"But a lot of the younger players on our team have club-ball experience," said Schmidt.

"I think that, and the time they spent on varsity this year, will be taken into the game."

Centennial striker Michelle Clare (12 goals, eight assists) is also teammates with a couple of Dulaney players during the summer. Clare plays on the Columbia Spirit with Dulaney striker Allie Shuch (17 goals, 16 assists) and midfielder Abby Bausman (19, 13).

The second-ranked Lions (14-1), who have allowed just 12 goals with eight shutouts, will rely on sophomore stopper Nicole Smith, sweeper Brett Zimmerman and junior fullback Whitney McClelland to stop the skillful Eagles offense of Brunt, Clare and Allison Bielski (four goals, three assists).

Midfielders Bausman and Megan Truxel (four goals, 22 assists) should have their hands full battling Rich and Kelly Butler. Rich can be an effective physical player, and Butler is an excellent tackler.

Each team is hoping to get help from its role players.

Fullbacks Tania Riismandel and Jamie Fontaine have been steady for the Eagles, who have allowed more than one goal only three times this year.

The Lions got a pleasant surprise in Chrissy Jackson (six goals, one assist), who had a hat trick in last weekend's 6-2 semifinal victory over South Carroll.

Dulaney also will need extra support from Megan's younger sister, Heather Truxel (three goals, six assists).

The Lions may be the area's highest scoring team, but the bulk of its total came against several teams who were simply out-gunned by the Lions.

That's a fact that isn't lost on Vaughan.

"We're going to go out and try and gain more respect for Baltimore County," said Vaughan, who has 74 career goals with 39 career assists. "We played this year like no one expects us to win, going out to prove ourselves again and again each week. We really want it this year, and we think we can do it this time."

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