Centennial tasted playoffs, comes back for more Glenelg, Hammond still tough

Atholton ready to contend 1993 high school boys lacrosse preview

March 24, 1993|By Gary Lambrecht | Gary Lambrecht,Staff Writer

Atholton Raiders

The Raiders went 4-8 last year, including 2-5 in the county, which was a modest improvement from the 1991 season. This spring, Atholton could turn the corner into contention.

First of all, the entire starting defensive unit is back from a team that lost its last four games by a total of five goals. Seniors David Koch and Josh Harold and junior Adam Shaivitz have returned. Senior goalie Alex Hill, a backup last year, moves into a starting role.

"It's a good group of guys, and I think they're going to accept the challenge that's in front of them," coach Wendell Thomas said.

What's in front of them is an offense that struggled all last spring.

The Raiders are looking for added scoring from a midfield unit that should be better. Junior Matt Treese, Atholton's leading scorer among middies last year, is back. "He's going to be a dominant player for us," Thomas said.

Treese and senior Charles Fuller give the Raiders a good combination of speed and experience. Junior Chris Buscher moves up from the junior varsity, where he was a solid faceoff man last year.

The second midfield unit is untested. Junior Sean David, sophomore Seth Lyons and first-year senior Jeff May hope to give Atholton the depth it lacked at that position last year.

On the attack, the Raiders figure to get a huge boost from sophomore Billy Carr, a transfer from St. Paul's, which went undefeated and finished No. 1 last year. Carr is one of the most skilled players on the team. Senior Brett Griffith and junior Mike Marcyz -- up from the junior varsity -- round out the starting attack. Griffith played a little last year.

Centennial Eagles

The Eagles broke through after years of frustration last spring to finish second in the county with a 6-1 record (12-3 overall) and make the playoffs for the first time in 10 years. This year, coach Mike Siegert, who normally downplays his team's chances, hardly can contain his excitement. The Eagles have good speed, great skills and a winning attitude.

"We've got a great blend of young guys and leaders. Once in a while, you get a group who lives and breathes lacrosse. That's these guys," Siegert said. "I think we've got a chance to take it a step further this year."

The Eagles will be led by senior midfielder Werner Krueger, an all-county player last year who is headed to Johns Hopkins. He led the team in ground balls, scored a team-high 32 goals and dished out 15 assists, second on the team.

"This kid [Krueger] is going to be an All-American. He does it all," Siegert said. "We've needed him to fulfill a certain role before. This year, we're counting on him to carry the load offensively."

Senior midfielders Greg Matschat (seven goals) and Brian Rhodes (11 goals, eight assists) should provide good complements to Krueger, and Rhodes is a proven faceoff man. (( The Eagles also will look for midfield help from a junior varsity that went 12-0 last year. Sophomores Joe Lowrance, Dave Peek and Mike Shackleford -- up from the JV -- will combine with returning senior Jeremy Odelius to fill out the second midfield unit.

Centennial's attack should be potent, despite its youth. Sophomores Rob Wilbur and Rob Hauff are back, Hauff after scoring 10 goals and adding six assists last year. Sophomores Tony Harding, Dave Saunders and junior Brian Rowe are up from the junior varsity.

Defense is where the Eagles took the biggest hit at graduation, and defense will be the Eagles' question mark. Senior goalie Will Hong is back. He had 132 saves, a .650 save percentage, and he should provide stability. But the season probably will come down to how smoothly sophomores Matt Rainwater, Steve Puckett and Chris Cochran and seniors Burke Hare and Doug Golden mature on defense. Only Rainwater started last year.

Glenelg Gladiators

The Gladiators, who became one of the county's more competitive teams two years ago, should be able to shake off some key graduation losses and stay in the thick of the county title race. Glenelg went 8-5 last year, 4-3 in the county.

"On paper, it looks like we lost a whole lot, but there's every indication that we should do well," coach Rick Kincaid said. "Our team speed on defense is much better than last year. We're definitely going to surprise some people. This team has great chemistry."

Senior midfielder Matt DeMontaigne will anchor the team. He was a fine faceoff man last year, when he scored 19 goals and had 10 assists. The Gladiators also are looking for more scoring punch out of senior midfielder Jason Caulder (nine goals, five assists). Senior Jamey Arnsmeyer also will start. Juniors Jeff and Chris Cordisco give the Gladiators excellent speed on the second unit.

ZTC Kincaid is hoping for big seasons from senior attackmen Arvak Marshall and Brent Grabill, each of whom played sparingly last year. Junior attackman Jeremy Smith, 6 feet 6, 260 pounds, should set some bruising screens.

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