1997-98 field hockey preview

September 11, 1997|By Mark Hoeflich

Aberdeen Eagles

1996 record: 1-9

Coach: Susan Sumner

Top player: Lyndsey Allen, F, Soph.; Melanie Johnson, M. Sr.; Barbie Matos, M, Sr.

Outlook: The Eagles were shut out numerous times a year ago, but a squad made up of 12 seniors hopes for a turn-around. Allen is the best choice to change the Eagles' scoring woes. However, they will need more consistent defense.

Bel Air Bobcats

1996 record: 3-6

Coach: Phyllis Hemmes

Top player: Christine Bayles, M, Sr.; Brooke Burgess, A, Sr.; Carolyn Samuels, F, Sr.; Carrie Smallwood, D, Sr.

Outlook: The Bobcats have an unproven goalie and several juniors with little varsity experience to match up against a stiff non-league schedule. Bayles' strong play in the middle is key to the transition game as the Bobcats look to increase their production in the circle.

C. Milton Wright Mustangs

1996 record: 5-6

Coach: Carla Harwood

Top player: Julie Baker, F, Sr.; Amanda Behler, F, Sr.; Patti Kraus, D, Sr.; Carrie Lueckel, D, Sr.; Jen Reedy, Sr., G; Lauren Popilock, M, Soph.; Julie Stazisar, F, Sr.

Outlook: First-year coach Harwood looks to bring some stability to a program that has had three different coaches in the last four years yet managed to advance deep into the regional playoffs. The Mustangs are a very cohesive group, especially on defense, where Reedy starts her fourth year in goal. Behler is a high-percentage scorer and should get help from Baker.

Edgewood Rams

1996 record: 2-8-1

Coach: Shelly Marzicola

Top players: Lauren Blimline, F, Sr.; Terri Price, M, Sr.; Martha Sanders, D, Soph.; Erica Taylor, G, Sr.

Outlook: The Rams are a very thin squad, having just 13 players, and Marzicola is forced to lean heavily on her starters. The skill level has increased and Marzicola thinks she has the right people to improve the defense.

Fallston Cougars

1996 record: 15-1-1

Coach: Alice Puckett

Top players: Adriane Keller, D, Sr.; Danielle Marconi, M, Sr.; Diana Ordes, F, Sr.; Kate Simon, M, Sr.; Ashley Staples, G, Soph.; Carrie Wirth, D, Sr.

Outlook: Puckett has put high expectations on her Cougars and with good reason. The Cougars, who tied Magruder in the state (( Class 3A title a year ago, are talent-rich and versatile, beginning with All-Metro selections, Simon (three goals, six assists) and Wirth (10 goals, five assists), both of whom are dominant at both ends of the field. Puckett also has more options on the front line and a standout goalie in Staples, who allowed only two goals last season. Expect Fallston to make a run at its fourth state title in five years.

Havre de Grace Warriors

1996 record: 8-4

Coach: Judy Forder

Top players: Katie Brochu, Sr., MF; Monique Brown, Sr., D; Kate Boyle, Sr., GK; Beth Carr, Sr., MF; Jocie Cox, Sr., D; Debby Voss, Sr., MF.

Outlook: The Warriors had a breakthrough season a year ago, and with all three lines intact, they're on their way to an even better season. A group of eight seniors should provide the biggest impact. Among them is Boyle, who heads a defensive unit that has been together since their sophomore years, and Brochu and Tilly Leas, who lead an attack that is no longer one-dimensional. "If the girls play together, they can get farther than they ever thought," said Forder.

John Carroll Patriots

1996 record: 4-8-1

Coach: Tess Gauthier

Top players: Michele Barbiari, F, Sr.; Brooke Barrett, D, Sr.; Colleen Curran, F, Sr.; Christy Daniel, G, Sr.; Kristen McGraw, F, Sr.

Outlook: The Patriots, who tied Oldfield in last season's Association of Independent Schools B Division Tournament final, remain sound on defense but hope to counter with an increase in goals. Gauthier thinks that is possible with the support of a strong junior class at the links positions.

Joppatowne Mariners

1996 record: 7-6

Coach: Pam Reich

Top players: Amie Dellone, F, Sr.; Debbie Harden, M, Jr.; Denise Kurtyka, G, Jr.; Joline Kraft, D, Sr.; Kim Shoul, M, Sr.; Valerie Weaver, F, Sr.

Outlook: The Mariners lost a lot on the front line with the graduation of three-time All-County selection Kim Rohrs, but Reich likes having more versatility and youthfullness around the circle. Much of Joppatowne's success on defense will depend on the play of Kraft (sweeper) and Kurtyka, both of whom carry larger roles.

North Harford Hawks

1996 record: NA

Coach: Barb Waite

Top player: Jane Barbacane, M, Sr.; Heather Cook, G, Sr.; Ariane Grubb, D, Sr.; Megan Mullin, D, Sr.; Megan Schuckle, D, Sr.; Amy Thomas, F, Sr.; Shannon Troyer, M, Jr.

Outlook: The addition of several juniors on the front line gives the Hawks more speed and scoring potential to match up against a challenging non-league schedule. The backline will need a collective effort and key minutes from Troyer to hold up.

Pub Date: 9/11/97

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