Atholton's forward duo too fast for Oakland Mills

October 13, 1994|By Chuck Acquisto | Chuck Acquisto,Special to The Sun

After a few seasons languishing in the cellar of the county league, Atholton has moved to loftier accommodations.

The Raiders' 3-1 victory over visiting and 15th-ranked Oakland Mills yesterday kept unranked Atholton (5-1-1, 2-0) atop the league standings, tied with Centennial.

Atholton's junior forward duo of Shannon Carter and Lea Nichols led the Raiders' aggressive attack in handing Oakland Mills its first loss. Carter tallied two goals and notched an assist on Nichols' late second-half goal.

"Lea and Shannon are very aggressive players and hard to stop," Atholton coach Carol Stevens said. "There are not many players in the county that have the genuine athletic speed that they lTC possess. Their sticks have caught up to their feet this season."

While Oakland Mills coach Chris Marsiglia pleaded with her front-line players to maintain field balance in the first half, the few Scorpion offensive chances fizzled. The loss to Atholton dropped Oakland Mills to 5-1-1 (0-1-1 in county).

Carter and Atholton dominated the first half with ball control and an aggressive attack. While Atholton totaled five first-half corner shots to keep Scorpion sophomore goalie Melissa Hampshire busy (five saves), Oakland Mills tallied just one.

Carter gave Atholton the lead nearly six minutes into the first half, scoring unassisted with a shot into the left corner of the goal.

"All day in school I kept thinking about how badly I wanted us to win this game," Carter said. "That was my motivation when I got out there on the field."

Carter caught senior Kathyrn Glasgow's rebounded shot off Hampshire on her stick and shuffled the ball past the swarmed Scorpion goalie for a 2-0 Raider advantage with 22:30 left in the game.

Five minutes later, Carter assisted Nichols for a 3-0 lead.

Oakland Mills senior Nicole Cousin surprised Atholton junior goalie Sarah Geatz (three saves) with a hard shot that ended the shutout bid with just under seven minutes left.

Stevens thinks the Raiders could easily be undefeated.

"Our lone loss to C.M. Wright [1-0] was partially because we arrived nearly an hour and a half late to the field and had little if any time to warm up," Stevens said.

Carter, who now has three goals and three assists, said she and her teammates are seriously thinking about the postseason.

"Monday's win doubled our win total from last year [2-5-5, 1-3-3] and we want to go to regionals," Carter said.

"We know Oakland Mills is in our division and that we haven't been highly regarded in field hockey, so this win was big for us."

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