Team-by-team Capsules

September 09, 1994|By Rick Belz

Atholton Raiders

1993 record: 5-5. Coach: Don Van Deusen (21st year).

Top players: Adam Martiny, Sr., OT/DT; Ricky Trott, Jr., RB/LB; Jamie Burford, Sr., QB/DB; Matt Radik, Sr., C/DE; Joe Garrison, Sr., LB; Ed Chang, Sr., WR; Mel Enderes, Sr., G/DE; Mike Radford, Sr., WR/DB; Jon Sanford, Jr., RB/LB; Matt Robinson, Sr., OT/DT.

Outlook: The Raiders return three offensive starters (Chang, Enderes and Martiny) and four defensive starters (Burford, Trott, Radik and Garrison).

Trott, an All-County kick returner, rushed 47 times for 246 yards as a backup RB. Burford, a backup quarterback last season, will start as quarterback, defensive back and punter. Robinson is a transfer from Kansas. Martiny (6 feet, 262 pounds) was an All-County offensive tackle.

Depth at running back might find the Raiders operating less from last season's run-and-shoot offense and more from an offset I. The secondary is the defense's strength and encouraged a switch from last season's 4-4 defense to a 4-3-4. Nine players will start two ways.

Atholton appears improved enough to take a step up from last season's 2-5 league record.

Centennial Eagles

1993 record: 4-6. Coach: Ed Holshue (fifth year).

Top players: John O'Connor, Sr., T; John Coles, Sr., G; Kevin O'Connor, Sr., TE/DE; Brian Dowell, Sr., QB; Rob Hauff, Sr., RB/LB; Dominic Dinisio, Sr., WR; Steve Puckett, Sr., FB; Chris Cochran, Sr., DE; Jeff Conner, Sr., LB; Joe Lowrance, Sr., DB.

Outlook: The Eagles return seven offensive starters and five defensive starters -- the most of any county team.

Centennial might be the heaviest team. It features 13 players who weigh more than 200 pounds -- topped by John O'Connor at 290. "I've never had a team this big," said Holshue, who spent nine years as head coach at Mount Hebron. He also will have the county's deepest team with 40 varsity players.

An offense that relied upon one running back (Don Culbreth, 1,098 yards) last season will enjoy three this year with sophomore Scott Bross and senior Mansa McQueen, two

speedsters, joining Hauff in what Holshue calls a "three-headed monster." Hauff, mainly a blocking back a year ago, gained 274 yards on 50 carries.

Centennial, the only county team to beat Howard last season, would like to throw more often. Dowell completed 28 of 86 passes for 303 yards. His top targets will be Dinisio and senior wide receiver Kevin Heywood. Kevin O'Connor caught 10 passes at tight end.

The defense will sport a five-man front line instead of four, and the secondary is inexperienced. But the Eagles have more team speed and should improve upon last season's 2-5 league record. They might be improved enough to contend for the county title.

Glenelg Gladiators

1993 record: 8-2. Coach: Ed Ashwell (fourth year).

Top players: Sean Lookingbill, Sr., QB; Mike Deming, Sr., FB; Phil Stanton, Sr., OT; Zach Guerra, Sr., LB; Brian Frederick, Sr., WR; Jeremy Goetz, Sr., DB; Frank Brosenne, Jr., OT; Paul Marick, Jr., B; Jeremy Lignelli, Soph., RB; Steve Dulaney, Jr., WR/DB.

Outlook: The Gladiators graduated five All-County players and are young and rebuilding. Lookingbill, Deming and Stanton are the only returning offensive starters and Guerra is the only returning defensive starter.

Glenelg will have good size with Stanton (225 pounds), Brosenne (240) and Marick (225), but it will have less speed than last season.

A pro-set offense and 5-2 defense remain in place, but Ashwell is having to spend more time teaching fundamentals this season.

Lookingbill is a strong passer and a third-year starter. The secondary is young but should be a team strength.

"We're unproven, but just because we're young it doesn't mean we'll be bad," Ashwell said.

Hammond Bears

1993 record: 7-3. Coach: Joe Russo (16th year).

Top players: Jim Weston, Sr., C/NG; Tim Spruill, Sr., QB/DB; Joe Cullen, Sr., DT; James Rumman, Sr., OG/DT; Dave Friedman, Jr., TE/LB; Ron Gamble, Jr., RB/LB.

Outlook: Spruill is a sensational athlete who gives the Bears a constant offensive threat. He's also the punter, kicker and kick returner.

But, he lacks an experienced offensive line -- one reason the Bears have gone to a shotgun formation after running a multiple I last season. Gamble, at 225 pounds, should help offensively.

Hammond graduated three All-County defensive players and lost another to a transfer. Weston is an All-County returnee who hopes to keep the defense playing aggressively.

The Bears have only 19 players, and a lack of depth and experience should make it difficult to match last season's 5-2 league record.

Howard Lions

1993 record: 9-2. Coach: John Quinn (ninth year).

Top players: DaLawn Parrish, Sr., QB/DB; A. J. Durham, Sr., TE/DE; Corey Curtis, Sr., RB/LB; Turrae Jones, Sr., RB/LB; Frank Tortella, Jr., C; Letam Biira, Sr., G/NG; Shawn Sherman, Sr., G; Rusty Miller, Sr., FB; Chris Harrington, Sr., T.

Outlook: The Lions return eight starters from a team that won the Howard County title and then lost to Poly in the state quarterfinals.

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