Title-winning Monninger hanging up his chalk Notebook

April 10, 1996|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

One of the most successful boys basketball coaches in Howard County history is retiring from teaching at the end of this semester.

Chuck Monninger directed the Mount Hebron Vikings to five county championships and one state title during his 11 seasons as varsity coach.

Monninger, 56, is ending a 34-year teaching career. He taught physical education at Mount Hebron for 21 years after starting his career at Lake Clifton and City.

"I was truly blessed with many fine players and a great community to work with," Monninger said, who last coached in 1990-91. "I have lots and lots of fond memories."

In 1978-79, his second year of coaching the basketball team, it went 21-1, and came back the next season to go 24-2, and then 23-3 in 1980-81. The Vikings won county titles each of those three seasons.

Mount Hebron went 21-4 and won county and state championships in 1984, led by freshman Barry Young and senior Cliff Rees. Young went on to play for a national championship team at UNLV, and Rees played at Navy.

Monninger's last county championship team was in 1986-87.

During his teaching tenure at Mount Hebron, he also coached tennis, golf and football.

Courting Conwell

Never before have so many county basketball players been recruited by Division I schools.

Wilde Lake's 6-foot-8 center Carl Jackson signed early with Penn State last October. Now, interest is picking up in The Sun's two-time Howard County Player of the Year, Irving Conwell, a 6-4 guard/forward, who also was an All-Metro first-team selection.

The NCAA signing period for national letters of intent begins today and runs through May 15.

Oakland Mills' Conwell, who said he received a call Monday from Georgetown, will play in Saturday's Mid State Roundball Classic at Cumberland Valley High in Mechanicsburg, Pa. The games include a boys game featuring a team of Maryland all-stars vs. Pennsylvania all-stars at 7: 30 p.m.

George Washington, Georgia, Tulane and Towson State also are interest in Conwell.

Conwell said that representatives from those schools have requested game films and would be watching him in the all-star game.

Conwell has expressed interest in playing with GW's freshman guard Shawnta Rogers, a Lake Clifton graduate who was The Sun's Player of the Year in 1995.

"I want to play basketball at a major level, and I'd like to make a decision over the next two weeks," said Conwell.

Patrick Ngongba of Ellicott City, a 6-7 center who played last season for Calvert Hall after a junior season at Mount Hebron, visited the University of Houston two weeks ago. He said he still wants to visit Providence, Alabama, Dayton and George Washington.

Ngongba, who led the Cardinals to their second straight Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association title, is rated one of the top five unsigned power forwards in the nation by Reidel's Roundball Review.

Danny Whye of Ellicott City, a 6-6 center who played for Mount St. Joe, hasn't made any visits, but has narrowed his list of schools to Boston University, Towson State, Delaware, Dayton, George Mason and Virginia Commonwealth.

Laycock at camp

Matt Laycock, first team All-Metro soccer midfielder from Centennial, participated in a developmental camp with the national under-18 team in Birmingham, Ala., March 13-17. The 6-5 junior played in international competition on the national ODP under-17 team last summer. The under-18 team will hold another developmental camp in June.

Reds tryouts

The Columbia Reds 15-16 baseball team will hold tryouts Sunday and April 21 from 12: 30 p.m. to 3 p.m. at Centennial High. Information: Larry Thompson, (410) 465-9205.

Pub Date: 4/10/96

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