1997 All-Baltimore City/ County girls soccer team


Player of the Year

Becky Bieneman, Catholic, junior, striker: A determined shooter and shrewd set-up artist, Bieneman gave opponents double trouble. The Cubs' top scorer had 26 goals and 17 assists in leading them to the Catholic League A Division championship and the final No. 1 ranking. She had a goal or an assist in 17 of 22 games as the Cubs (20-1-1) spent all but three weeks in The Sun's No. 1 spot and reached as high as fourth in the nation in USA Today's Top 25. Bieneman's game lacked nothing. A resourceful clutch player, she scored five goals in the Catholic League tournament, including all three in the 3-0 semifinal victory over John Carroll. Bieneman, who was second-team All-Metro last fall, also ensured that the Cubs won the Catholic League regular-season title. She had two points in each of the most critical games -- both goals in a 2-2 tie with Notre Dame Prep and a goal and an assist in the early-season 3-2 victory over McDonogh. "My word for Becky is 'balanced,'" said Catholic coach Jerry Dieter. "She'll do what she needs to do when she needs to do it, and she knows the difference. She'll give it up when she has to, and she'll score when she has the opportunity. And what a great attitude. You would love to have 11 Becky Bienemans." Named first-team All-State, Bieneman boosted her three-year totals to 54 goals and 38 assists. She also plays basketball and was a second-team All-Baltimore City/County lacrosse player.

Coach of the Year

Maurice Boylan Jr., McDonogh: Not only did Boylan field one his youngest teams, he had to help them overcome a slow start. Ranked No. 15 in preseason, the Eagles stumbled and got some bad breaks early, but they rebounded in a big way. After a 3-2 loss to Catholic on Sept. 18, the Eagles were 2-2-2. Seven weeks later, they were ranked No. 1. Sparked by a stunning 1-0 upset of Catholic, the Eagles went 14-0-2 between Sept. 18 and Nov. 12, when they lost to the Cubs 4-1 in the Catholic League A Division title game. "It was a steady climb," said Boylan, who has a 116-21-12 record in seven years at McDonogh. "Early on, we weren't playing that bad; we were unlucky. We outplayed most of the teams that we tied and lost to. The only teams that outplayed us were St. Mary's -- they outshot us in both games -- and Catholic in the last game." Even though he had some exceptional players, Boylan had only five seniors on his 18-girl roster. His biggest challenge was to bring the young players along and find the right role for each one. "It was teamwork from the first person on the team to the last . It was a great group to work with. There was no friction or baloney. We didn't have a good-enough team that we could look past anybody." Boylan's assistants were Georgia Holland-Pence, Jay Golomb and Kim Mitchell.

The first team

Brandy Ault, Institute of Notre Dame, junior, forward: A lethal shooter, Ault showed her versatility by spending time in the midfield. Because she was often double-teamed up front, Ault found more space to create when she moved back. Her ability to win the ball in the air or on the ground made her the perfect midfield catalyst. She had 13 assists but continued to finish, too, scoring 19 goals. Ault was named first-team All-Catholic League.

Nicole Brooks, Catholic, senior, forward: Not much could stop the Catholic League's top goal scorer. A mid-September shoulder injury slowed Brooks, but she played through it and her numbers didn't suffer. Neither did her hard-nosed, go-to-goal attitude. Brooks scored 31 goals despite being marked in every game and often double-teamed. She also had seven assists. An All-Metro striker last year, Brooks finished her career with 80 goals and 27 assists. She was named first team All-Catholic League and first-team All-State.

Corrine Butcher, Catholic, senior, goalkeeper: The heart of the Cubs' defense, Butcher had 13 shutouts in 22 games. No team scored more than two goals against her, and she allowed only 0.64 goals a game. She rarely had to make a lot of saves, and one of her best efforts came with five huge stops in the early 3-2 win over McDonogh. Butcher also had 12 saves in a 2-0 win at St. Mary's, eight in a 2-2 tie with Notre Dame Prep and 14 in a 1-0 loss to McDonogh.

Sara Gustafson, Franklin, senior, midfield: A two-time All-Metro and four-time All-State player, Gustafson led Baltimore County in regular-season scoring. A tenacious and creative player, she moved between the midfield and the front to start or finish many of the Indians' opportunities. She contributed 23 goals, a third of her team's total, and eight assists. Gustafson led the Indians (11-4-1) into the county championship game and the regional final. She finished her four-year career with 83 goals and 38 assists.

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