1998 Harford County previews

September 02, 1998|By Mark Hoeflich

Aberdeen Eagles

1997 record: 3-9

Coach: Jim McClenahan

Top players: Felicia Fields, Sr., D.; Megan Moe, Soph., M.; Sally Resau, Soph., S.; Katie Ruth, Sr., M.

Outlook: The Eagles will find the going tough with their youngest and most inexperienced team in recent memory.

Bel Air Bobcats

1997 record: 11-6

Coach: Bill Zimmerman

Top players: Lindsay Bugda, Sr., G; Anne Clark, Sr., D.; Jen Chumley, Jr., D.; Nikki Hentz, Sr., D.; Adrienne Justis, Sr., S-M.; April Madden, Jr., S-M.; Lori Zimmerman, Sr., D.; Jen Wilkinson, Sr., M.

Outlook: The Bobcats will need some time to develop and find their rhythm at both ends of the field after losing five three-year starters. Most of the scoring will come from the midfield, particularly Justis and Madden, but a revamped defense, without a strong sweeper, likely will decide if the Bobcats can stay in contention for the league title. Consistently one of the most disciplined teams in Harford County, Bel Air figures to be better late than early.

C. Milton Wright Mustangs

1997 record: 10-2-2

Coach: Peter Griffiths

Top players: Lauren Cramer, Jr., D.; Paige Heath, Jr., M.; Sarah Janowitz, Sr., D.; Erica Kiss, Jr., M.; Ashley Lesh, Sr., D.; Dawn Rumbley, Sr., S.

Outlook: The Mustangs lost a major player at each skilled position yet return a strong nucleus that includes six upperclassmen, many of whom will see increased minutes and larger roles. Rumbley (12 goals) is the only proven scorer and Janowitz goes from second to first defender. "The big thing is how we react to the early-season schedule," Griffiths said. The Mustangs' early matchups include McDonogh, Centennial and Fallston, all on the road.

Edgewood Rams

1997 record: 6-7-1

Coach: Matthew Rankin

Top players: Kim Broderick, Jr., M.; Lauren Kline, Jr., S.; Katie Single, Sr., G.; Erica Slaysman, Sr., D.; Terri Staab, Sr., D.; Stefanie Wilhelm, Jr., S.

Outlook: The Rams improved by two wins a year ago over the 1996 season and with a more versatile group this season, Rankin likes Edgewood's chances for its first winning season in eight years. Expect the Rams to be a more gutsy group with a much-improved defense.

Fallston Cougars

1997 record: 14-3

Coach: Nancy Ferguson

Top players: Kristen Gayo, Sr., D.; Jessica Hammer, Jr., D.; Gina Lattanzi, Jr., S.; Michelle Lookingland, Jr., D.; Candy Kuligowski, Sr., G.

Outlook: Early on, this could be one of Ferguson's more challenging coaching seasons. With the loss of seven seniors, the Cougars are without the usual standout scorer up front and a leader in the middle of the field. Defensively, however, the Cougars remain nearly intact with the excellent trio of Hammer, Gayo and Kuligowski, who's one of the top goalies in the league. A Sept. 23 game against C. Milton Wright will likely decide who gets the early lead for the league title. "We need to work on our positioning and field sense, things that have been a luxury to us the last couple of years," Ferguson said.

...

Havre de Grace Warriors

1997 record: 4-10

Coach: Tara Phillips

Top players: Katy Bradford, Jr., D.; Amanda Grainger, Jr., D.; Mary Griffin, Jr., S.; Melissa Personeus, Sr., S.; Pauline Rivera, Sr., M.; Jenn Schwartz, Jr., S.

Outlook: With a larger turnout of players with experience, Phillips hopes the Warriors can close the gap between the larger schools in the league. Personeus returns as the leading scorer the last two seasons and goalkeeper Lynne Ruchlewicz is recovering nicely from a knee injury.

John Carroll Patriots

1997 record: 8-4-2

Coach: Gary Lynch

Top players: Jenny Biscoe, Jr., M.; Katie McAvoy, Sr., S.; Maggie Pyzik, Soph., G.; Laura Tiburzi, Sr., D.

Outlook: The Patriots were hurt by a slow start last season, but 12 returnees have Lynch thinking his squad can keep pace with the top teams in Catholic League. McAvoy and Biscoe are the only proven scorers, but the Patriots look to use their superb quickness to attack more. The improved play of Pyzik could be the difference in the Patriots' making the playoffs for the third straight year.

Joppatowne Mariners

1997 record: 6-6

Coach: Chris Myers

Top players: Kim Gorsch, Jr., F.; Nicole Hammer, Sr., D.; Stacy Mazza, Sr., D.; Tonya Meeke, Sr., G.; Becky Sullens, Sr., D.

Outlook: The Mariners are strongest at midfield, where Gorsch heads a skillful group that hopes to improve on shot selection. A thin bench means the starters will get a lot of minutes. Meeke moves from midfield to goal to solidify the defense.

North Harford Hawks

1997 record: 6-5-1

Coach: Tom Berg

Top players: Ann Anderson, St., S.; Julie Blevins, Sr., G.; Tara Buecker, Soph., S-M.; Kristen Krastel, Sr., D.

Outlook: Hit hard by graduation -- eight starters lost -- the well-conditioned Hawks still figure to get their 13th winning season in 14 years. Many of last year's reserves now get starting roles and a lighter schedule should help. The defense looks to be no worse than the group that allowed just 12 goals a year ago.

Pub Date: 9/02/98

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