Defense helps C. M. Wright stick it out Young attack beginning to jell

April 25, 1993|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,Staff Writer

The opening game of the season may have provided the tip-off as to what this year's C. Milton Wright boys lacrosse team could accomplish.

The Mustangs rallied from an 8-4 deficit to defeat Centennial, 9-8, in a rematch of last year's 4A-3A regional final won by the Howard County team in double overtime.

Earlier this spring, there had been some concern shown because Wright had lost more than 100 goals to graduation and some of the replacements were relatively untested.

Now, the team has come along to where it is 7-2 and unbeaten in the Harford County League. The losses were to ranked teams from the Maryland Scholastic Association -- No. 9 Mount St. Joseph (7-5) and No. 3 Loyola (8-4).

A veteran defense, where there is only one newcomer from a year ago, has proved to be a decisive factor for C. Milton Wright, not only for its ability to thwart opposing attacks, but also for making its attack better.

"Our defense is running more this year, and we're more

aggressive,"

said senior defender Chuck Heinze. "We have gone to more double-teams, and that aggressiveness helps in those situations."

It shows in practice, too.

"Our defense is so tough now that going against it in practice forces us to play better offense," senior attackman Corey Lambroff said. "For that reason, I think we're a lot more prepared for other teams."

Another attackman, junior Brian King, said this year's defensive style has created more ball movement, which in turn often sets up the team for its transition game and run-and-gun offense. The key here is a solid group of midfielders, headed by seniors Dan Hurley and Ryan Strausburg.

Carl Greenberg, in his 13th season as head coach, acknowledged that his biggest preseason concerns were a lack of depth and how quickly the attack would jell. "Right now, with players like Brian King and David Blades, you can see they're getting better," he said.

The schedule also has been a part of that.

"We scrimmaged Gilman and Calvert Hall [currently ranked No. 2 and No. 11, respectively], and with Mount St. Joe and Loyola, that has given us four quality teams. We wanted to play the best teams possible and hope it really helps us," Greenberg said.

There is another factor, too, because Greenberg calls this group "the most athletic team I've ever had," although he acknowledges others might have had more lacrosse savvy. The way things have gone, this does not appear to be a problem.

King (11 assists) leads the team in goals with 20, and Lambroff (eight assists) has 18 goals. Blades (11 goals) is the assists leader with 16. Josh Peters has 15 goals and three assists; and Hurley has 10 goals and seven assists.

"We're getting a whole lot out of our attack, and I'm happy with the progress, especially new ones like Matt Jenkins, a senior, and Jason Tharpe, a junior, who has proven to be a strong faceoff man," Greenberg said. "We have two good goalies, too, in Jason Parks, the starter, and Adam Miller."

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