1997 All-Anne Arundel boys soccer team

November 20, 1997|By GLENN P. GRAHAM

Player of the year

Reb Beatty, Archbishop Spalding, senior, goalkeeper: At 6-foot-3, 190 pounds, Beatty was an imposing figure in the Cavaliers' goal. Add to that his agility, aggressiveness, intensity and knowledge of the game and you have all the tools of a unique goalkeeper. It was a special season at Spalding with the Cavaliers (14-5-2) reaching their first Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference championship and, despite a heartbreaking 1-0 loss to defending champion Calvert Hall, Beatty was right in the middle of the success. He finished the season with 142 saves and recorded nine shutouts to earn first-team All-State honors. "He's the best keeper in the state," said sixth-year coach Rick Carlson. "The big games is when he came up the biggest. Every time out, he'd make three big plays he shouldn't to keep us in a game. With Reb, there was urgency to games and practice. He's always playing to win." For Beatty, the approach to playing in goal was rather basic: "People coming into your goal box is like someone taking pie from your mother's kitchen," he said earlier in the season. "You constantly have to be aggressive and jump out at the ball to control your box -- it's like your house."

Coach of the year

Marc Osterberger, Severn: In past years, soccer at Severn was just something to do to keep in shape until the lacrosse season rolled around in the spring. But that's all changed now under the influence of Osterberger, who in his fourth season guided the Admirals to a 14-1-4 season and runner-up finish in the MIAA B Conference. The Admirals went unbeaten until the season's last day when they lost a 1-0 decision to St. Paul's in the final on UMBC Stadium's wet, artificial turf. With a senior-oriented group, Osterberger saw an opportunity to make a statement this season, and his Admirals did just that. He instilled a competitive, hard-working approach to practice that translated to wins in games. With six players more than 6 feet tall, he spent a lot of time in practice on long throws and corner kicks, which generated most of the Admirals' scoring. "We worked hard and stayed away from injuries. Everyone was thirsty for winning," Osterberger said.

The first team

Dustin Abey, Chesapeake, junior, forward: The three-year starter has good touch and a hard shot, but his biggest assets are his endless work rate and striker's mentality. A natural finisher, Abey battled through constant attention to finish the season with a team-high eight goals and also found open teammates for eight assists. His fine effort earned him second-team All-State status.

Kyle Beckerman, Arundel, sophomore, midfield: A dominating presence in the middle, Beckerman had a stellar year with 15 goals and four assists and first-team All-State honors. Most of the Wildcats' offense ran through Beckerman, who combined athleticism with good vision of the field and plenty of savvy. His ball skills enabled him to take advantage of the slightest opportunities.

Josh Booth, Southern-Harwood, senior, midfield: A repeat first-team All-County selection, Booth, with eight goals and seven assists, got his team to follow his lead with a 7-7-1 season after going 4-9 in 1996. A complete player who blended exceptional skills with an overwhelming desire to win, Booth has set the standard at Southern as the school's first All-State player; he was an honorable mention choice.

Chad Farley, Chesapeake, senior midfield: Whenever the Cougars needed a goal in a big game, Farley usually got it. He had 10 goals and six assists despite missing the first three games. Always in motion, Farley was a tough mark for opposing defenders with his quick feet, ball control and finishing touches. His most memorable effort came in the county championship game against Arundel when he scored three goals in a convincing 5-0 win.

Matt Hunter, Arundel, senior, forward: A big target up front for the Wildcats, Hunter scored 10 goals and assisted on eight others despite constant attention from opposing defenses. He showed versatility in his three-year varsity career, developing into a fine all-around player. He started at fullback as a sophomore, moved to midfield as a junior before closing out up top, where he quickly developed a striker's mentality.

Brian Lima, Arundel, senior, defense: After starting as a fullback as a sophomore, Lima was the Wildcats' sweeper the last two seasons. This fall, he was a model of consistency, showing understanding of the game and anticipation. Lima also developed into a fine vocal leader to keep the Wildcats' defense organized.

Sean McMullen, Archbishop Spalding, senior, midfield: Always regarded as a defensive midfielder, McMullen added another dimension to his game, stepping up offensively to become a solid two-way player. With six goals and three assists, he was versatile enough to play in the middle or flank at midfield. Fast, aggressive and strong in the air, McMullen challenged for everything that came his way.

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