Arundel's Chavonne Hammond and Severna Park's Jennifer Holmes, opponents during the high school season but teammates in the off-season with the Anne Arundel Hurricanes, are going to be college teammates.
Holmes has joined Hammond as a scholarship recipient to Vanderbilt, a team highly ranked in preseason publications. As juniors, the two made All-County and were named preseason honorable-mention All-Americans by Street & Smith's.
Hammond announced two weeks ago that she was headed for Nashville to play for the Commodores, and she and Holmes will sign a letter of intent today.
The 6-foot-2 Holmes led the Falcons to a 20-4 record, averaging 13 points, 17 boards and three blocks a game.
"Jennifer felt very comfortable in her visit to Vanderbilt and she can't go wrong there academically," said Falcons coach Kevin McGrath.
"She went to a camp there with Chavonne and was impressed. Part of her reason in choosing Vanderbilt was to play with Chavonne."
Holmes and Hammond were key members of the Hurricanes who finished third in this summer's Amateur Athletic Union National Tournament.
McGrath said top-ranked Connecticut was the first to contact Holmes last year, but her father, Moses, is retiring and moving to Florida and didn't want his daughter to be too far away. Other schools considered by Holmes were Penn State, Northwestern, Duke, Notre Dame, Georgetown, Florida and Wake Forest.
Defending 4A state champion North County (6-3) will not be in the football playoffs for the first time in five years. Meade has clinched a berth for the first time since 1987 by virtue of bonus points.
The Knights stand ninth in the race for eight berths with 73 points and the maximum they can earn with a victory over 3A Broadneck is 85. Meade (7-2) is eighth with 83 points and even if the Mustangs lose to No. 4 Arundel (9-0), the very worse they can be is one point better than North County for the final berth.
North County blanked Meade, 21-0, Friday, but 8-1 Sherwood's 34-14 victory over Watkins Mill (6-3) Saturday was the crucial game that ended the Knights' chances. North County needed Watkins Mills to win.
A Meade upset of Arundel would make those two and North County, county 4A tri-champions at 6-1 and would prevent a quarterfinal game between Arundel and Meade next week. Arundel is No. 1 in the state playoff rankings with 105.2 points and would play the eighth team -- Meade.
Coach Jamie McNealey and his St. Mary's boys soccer team, which tied St. Paul's, 2-2, for the co-championship of the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association B Conference, rank first in compassion.
Severn's senior goalie, Brian Zaks, broke his leg in the Admirals' 2-0 homecoming loss to St. Mary's. Several of the Saints grew up and played club soccer with Zaks and felt for his misfortune.
"The kids took Brian on our team bus to the championship game at UMBC Saturday," said McNealey, who was all for the idea. "It meant a lot to him."
McNealey has led the Saints to an overall 26-5-4 record in his two seasons after inheriting a team that was 4-30 the two previous seasons.
The St. Mary's JV boys soccer team also tied St. Paul's (1-1 tie) for the MIAA B Conference title. Freshmen Pat Wells, the Saints' leading scorer, goalie Chris Summers and sweeper Mark Kastantin led the JV Saints (12-2-3) of coach Michael Barth.
Taylor connection at CCC
North County girls lacrosse coach Tom Taylor has continued his success as the Catonsville Community College women's soccer coach by attracting some of Anne Arundel's best.
CCC defeated Essex CC, 2-1, Saturday to win the Region XX Championship and advance to the National JuCo Tournament in two weeks.
South River's Cassidie Dunbar and Glen Burnie' Sherry Witt scored the goals. Jennifer Tinsley of North County and Old Mill's Denise King had the assists for CCC (14-3-1).
"We did it primarily with the help of Anne Arundel County players," said Taylor, who has seven county products on a team ranked as high as sixth nationally.
Other county players are Kathy Sideras of Glen Burnie; South River's Kim Morehead and county resident Kathy Dunaway, who attended Archbishop Keough in Baltimore. Erin Foran, a grad of Bowie High, currently lives in the county.