Baltimore County volleyball previews

September 11, 1998|By Katherine Dunn, Rich Scherr and Jeff Seidel

Arlington Baptist Eagles

1997 record: 7-10

Coach: Liz Byers

Top players: Rachel Hamilton, Sr., OH; Darla Heller, Sr., OH; Jocelyn Johnson, Jr., OH; Julie Barber, Jr., S; Valerie Jones, Fr., S

Outlook: Byers has a number of good players returning from the team that finished second in the regular season in the Association of Independent Schools B Division. The Eagles have a strong nucleus fueled by a good mix of experience and depth. They also lost only one starter from last year and should challenge for the B Division title this season.

Beth Tfiloh Warriors

1997 record: Not available

Coach: Sonya Howell

Top players: Nina Auster, Jr., H; Renata Isaacson, Jr., S/H; Becky Auster, Fr., H; Lisa Miliman, Jr., S; Sherri Cohen, Jr., D

Outlook: New coach Howell, with no seniors and four of her 10 players freshmen, is making lots of changes. But talent exists: the Auster sisters and the freshmen were 7-0 in middle school.

Carver A&T Wildcats

1997 record: 4-11

Coach: Don Metil

Top players: Katy Korby, Sr., S/OH; Brooke Elsnic, Sr., OH; Leslie McTague, Sr., S/OH/MH; Keri Webb, Jr., S

Outlook: The Wildcats have just nine players, with none over 5-foot-7. Korby and McTague, however, can set, as well as hit.

Catonsville Comets

1997 record: 10-4

Coach: Debbie Clem

Top players: Lauren Buckley, Sr., S; Becca Packer, Sr., MH; Dannie Packer, So., OH/MH; Heather Hartage, Sr., OH

Outlook: The Division I Comets return only two part-time starters, Buckley and Becca Packer. The team is young in terms of skill but has potential, with some players up from an unbeaten county champion JV.

Chesapeake Bayhawks

1997 record: 7-6

Coach: Elizabeth Benzinger

Top players: Jill McMillion, Sr., OH; Chenel Murray, Sr., OH; Delisa Swiger, Sr., S; Jennifer Howley, Jr., S

Outlook: A rebuilding year for the Division II Bayhawks, who have only two players with varsity experience. They will, however, get boosts from Swiger, out injured last fall, and Howley, a solid setter up from JV. Co-captains McMillion and Murray should be strong hitters.

Dundalk Eagles

1997 record: 5-7

Coach: Amanda Barnes

Top players: Shannon King, Sr., H; Liz Srebroski, Sr., H; Jackie Fell, Jr., H; Mandy Cummings, Jr., H; Julia Miller, Jr., MH; Natalie Romano, Jr., S

Outlook: The young Eagles appear to have the tools to compete in Division II, and Barnes thinks the team will improve on last fall's record. Despite only two seniors, hitting will be the strong suit.

Dulaney Lions

1997 record: 17-2

Coach: Ian Blanchard

Top players: Melaney Heagy, Sr., OH; Teresa Graham, Sr., OH; Leanne Costa, Jr., OH; Erin Reinhardt, Jr., S; Lindsay Lawson, So., OH/S

Outlook: The Division I Lions won the Baltimore County championship last fall and, loaded with club players, are favored repeat. Still stinging from last year's regional playoff loss to Perry Hall, Blanchard said this team has one goal -- the state semifinals. With experience, skill, depth, strong serving and excellent defense, the Lions appear headed in that direction.

Eastern Tech Mavericks

1998 record: 15-3

Coach: Wrae Wene

Top players: Holly White, Sr., S; Jennifer Russini, Sr., utility; Stephanie Pferdeort, Sr., OH; April Sigmon, Jr., S; Jessica Laing, Jr., utility

Outlook: The defending Division II champions return just one starter and have a new coach in Wene, a former coach at Patterson. But don't discount them. A large turnout and a strong team ethic will boost them. White, a third-year starter, is just one of many players with good hands.

Franklin Indians

1998 record: 8-6

Coach: Jennifer Diaz

Top players: Jen Day, Sr., OH; Jessie Levy, Sr., S; Missy King, Sr., MH; Stephanie Kleiner, Sr., OH

Outlook: Diaz expects a rebuilding year. Still, with club players Day, Levy and Kleiner and promising seniors King, Paula Yellon and Melissa Dobres, the Indians' foundation is solid. If the youngsters come along, the Indians could make up some ground in Division I.

Hereford Bulls

1998 record: 12-3

Coach: Pat Pilson

Top players: Erin Barnes, Sr., MH; Tara Clarke, Jr., MH; Stacey Ensor, Jr., S; Megan Rutter, Jr., S; Erin McElvaney, Jr., OH

Outlook: Most players on this junior-dominated team spent their summers at volleyball camp, a plus, Pilson feels, for her Division II Bulls, who were regional finalists last fall.

Kenwood Bluebirds

1997 record: 0-15

Coach: Kristen Forsythe

Top players: Kristen Blackburn, Jr., OH/MH; Crystal Carey, Jr., OH/S; Devika Parsram, Jr., S; Heather Zukus, Jr., OH; Cathy Bauer, Sr., OH/MH

Outlook: The Bluebirds struggled after moving up to Division I last fall. But with five club players, new coach Forsythe believes this team may be a year away from making an impact. But don't look for them to go winless again.

Lansdowne Vikings

1997 record: 17-2

Coach: Deri Bash

Top players: Sarah Grimes, Sr., OH/S; Dawn Johns, Sr., MH; Lisa Brooks, Sr., OH; Liz Emmons, Sr., OH; Laura Happel, Jr., MH

Outlook: The Vikings are one of the county's most experienced teams. Grimes and Johns should be the heart of a team expected to contend for the Division I title.

Loch Raven Raiders

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