1996 All-Howard County soccer teams

November 21, 1996|By RICK BELZ AND STAN RAPPAPORT

All-Howard County boys soccer team

Player of the Year: Matt Stephenson, Centennial

Coach of the Year: Bill Stara, River Hill

FIRST TEAM

Name .............. School ........ Year ..... Position

Lars Berg ......... Wilde Lake .... Junior ... Defense

David Briefel ..... Wilde Lake .... Senior ... Midfield

Pat Halter ........ Mount Hebron .. Senior ... Midfield

Matt Laycock ...... Centennial .... Senior ... Midfield

Christian Lewis ... Centennial .... Senior ... Goalkeeper

Brian Otten ....... Centennial .... Senior ... Midfield

Kamil Quander ..... Hammond ....... Senior ... Defense

Ben Stephenson .... Centennial .... Senior ... Defense

Matt Stephenson ... Centennial .... Senior ... Forward

Mike Stromberg .... Mount Hebron .. Senior ... Forward

Andy Walter ....... Atholton ...... Senior ... Goalkeeper

Cort Yetso ........ Centennial .... Senior ... Defense

SECOND TEAM

Billy Allen ....... River Hill ..... Junior .... Forward

Adom Crew ......... River Hill ..... Freshman .. Midfield

Robbie Graham ..... Mount Hebron ... Senior .... Midfield

Jason Gotis ....... Oakland Mills .. Senior .... Forward

Eric Mason ........ Mount Hebron ... Senior .... Defense

Dan Miller ........ Howard ......... Senior .... Midfield

Nick Parypinski ... Wilde Lake ..... Junior .... Goalkeeper

Brian Picker ...... Mount Hebron ... Senior .... Defense

Ryan Pflugrad ..... Hammond ........ Junior .... Midfield

Sam Salganik ...... River Hill ..... Junior .... Defense

Zeeshan Shafi ..... Glenelg ........ Senior .... Defense

Matt Shapiro ...... Wilde Lake ..... Junior .... Defense

Tom Wunk .......... Mount Hebron ... Junior .... Goalkeeper

Player of the Year

Matt Stephenson, Centennial, senior, forward: A first-team All-County player for four years, during which time Centennial went 59-3-3 and won two state, four region and four county titles, he capped his career by scoring a goal or having an assist in every game this season, finishing with 19 goals and 10 assists, both career highs. He scored Centennial's only goal in the state semifinal loss to Thomas Stone, ending his career with 50 goals and 27 assists and surpassing 1995 All-Metro Player of the Year Brian West (49 goals) to become Centennial's all-time goal-scoring leader. In overtime of the regional championship game, he made a 30-yard assist on the game-winning goal against Mount Hebron. He scored the game-winner in a 1-0 victory over No. 10 Wilde Lake. He is excellent with the ball, fast and tough to bring down. He's aggressive and tenacious, both during games and at practice, where he orally pushed his teammates to work harder. "He was nice to have around at practice," said coach Ron Martin. "He was a marked man all season and still scored a bunch of goals. He would have scored a lot for any team." Matt was first-team All-Metro last season and has played at the national Olympic Development Program level.

Coach of the Year

Bill Stara, River Hill: Despite having no seniors and only four juniors, Stara directed a first-year program to the finals of the state Class 1A championship, where the Hawks lost 2-1 to Williamsport, a team whose seniors were making their third final-four appearance. River Hill (14-4) lost only to second-ranked Centennial, fourth-ranked Mount Hebron and 10-ranked Wilde Lake during the regular season. The Hawks recorded 10 shutouts and allowed 15 goals, despite having to use a field player in goal after losing their starting goalkeeper for the season with a broken nose in the third game. Stara's career record is 220-26-10.

The first team

Lars Berg, Wilde Lake, junior, defense: At 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds, Berg emerged this season as one of the league's strongest defenders. He has good speed, is terrific in the air and delivers bone-jarring tackles. He rarely lost a 50-50 ball.

David Briefel, Wilde Lake, senior, midfield: With 16 goals and seven assists, he led the No. 10 Wildecats (11-5-1) to the state finals for the second straight year. The playmaker is a strong technical player with superb knowledge of the game and developed the ability this season to score off headers, a factor that boosted the four-year varsity player's season scoring to a career high. He was second-team All-Metro last season.

Pat Halter, Mount Hebron, senior, midfield: He scored the lone goal during Mount Hebron's biggest win of the season -- over unbeaten Broadneck in the regional semifinals. His field vision and exceptionally powerful and accurate passing enabled Mount Hebron to counter-attack quickly. An aggressive and fiery player, he scored nine goals and had nine assists. He was first-team All-Metro last season.

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