Top basketball coach Chance retires

SIDELINES

November 14, 1997|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,SUN STAFF

It happened rather quietly last week, but in typical, low-key Pat Chance style, the winningest girls basketball coach in Anne Arundel County history retired.

A la Dean Smith, Chance stepped down quietly as Old Mill's head coach so that her assistant would get the job. Patriots' athletic director Jim Dillon routinely announced that longtime JV coach Craig White will succeed Chance.

There was no hoopla or fanfare for Chance, because that was never her style.

Chance can hold her head high, retiring as the county's only female coach with 400 career victories in any sport.

Her teams at Glen Burnie, and for the last 22 of her 25 season at Old Mill were 415-150. The Old Mill teams won four state championships, the last in 1993.

Her teams were always well-disciplined, well-coached, and played hard until the final buzzer.

Chance was never interested in winning personality contests with the media or others, never made excuses, and pulled no punches. She cared, first and foremost, for her players and had their utmost respect.

Pat Chance was a real professional and leader of young women. Old Mill and Anne Arundel County is going to miss her dearly.

Severna Park's stellar field hockey coach Lil Shelton was inducted into the Anne Arundel County Sports Hall of Fame this year as the first active coach so honored.

I say, now let's make room for Pat Chance.

She has to be nominated, and I'm sure someone (how about scores of her proteges and peers?) out there would be willing to do that. Just call Michaels Eighth Avenue, 410-768-7901, and ask for an application.

2 countians make SI cover

We told you last week that Severna Park resident Steve Wojciechowski, who played basketball at Cardinal Gibbons and was The Sun's Male Athlete of the Year in 1994, would be on the front cover of Sports Illustrated's college basketball preview.

There he is, "Wojo," top-ranked Duke's fiery point guard on the Nov. 17 issue. But do you know who the blue-painted guy with the big sunglasses and Duke baseball cap is?

Hint: Another Severna Park resident and athlete.

It's David Orso, former All-Metro golfer from Severna Park High, now a senior captain of the golf team at the University of Dayton, averaging 75. Orso and Wojo have been close friends since high school, and the latter invited his buddy down to Duke to be a part of the photo shoot.

Sideliners

Old Mill's Jim Dillon also named former Chesapeake coach Bill Hickey as the Patriots' new indoor/outdoor track coach.

The teams and coaches at Monday's girls state soccer semifinals at Severna Park marveled over the excellent condition of George Roberts' field after the weekend monsoon.

"Our field has a great crown, and it's hard to believe we got all that rain," said athletic director Wayne Mook.

After seeing Severn's Dennard Melton at a summer camp, Indiana's Bobby Knight told the Hoosier football coaches to take a look at him as a possible two-sport athlete, according to Severn football coach John Beckman.

Beckman's football Admirals will play top-ranked Loyola next year.

Pallotti of Laurel is expected to play football in the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association B Conference next fall with Severn and Archbishop Spalding. Back in the 1980s, Pallotti played in the defunct Tri-County League with Severn, St. Mary's, Spalding and the old Brooklyn Park.

Former St. Mary's All-County kicker Mark Kiefer, who was an All-Atlantic 10 selection as a junior, is in his final year at Division I-AA Villanova and is 6-for-6 in field goal attempts.

Glen Burnie's Steve Jones, a product of the Rebels youth teams, is a promising linebacker on Mount St. Joseph's JV football team.

Maryland and Towson are interested in Peter Ludlam, the quarterback who led Annapolis into the playoffs, but they're interested in his lacrosse abilities.

Through the efforts of sports director Bill Frey, Jones Cable-22 has been televising a high school football game of the week. Now, to tape tonight's state playoff game at Annapolis, the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association is asking for a $300 fee and Jones has to run a 30-second Pepsi commercial. Can you believe that?

Have a note for Sidelines? Call Pat O'Malley's 24-hour Sportsline, 410-647-2499.

Pub Date: 11/14/97

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