1998 All-Carroll County field hockey teams

November 25, 1998

Player of the Year

Meredith Gill, North Carroll, senior, midfield: A two-time All-County selection, she dominated her team's play end-to-end. Playing in the center, she worked well with Erin German to give the Panthers a solid midfield combination. She finished with three goals and five assists. A four-year team member, she said, "This year was special because it was my senior one, and we had a good group of veterans and new players. I started by giving pep talks to some of the younger players, and by midseason they were giving them back to me. This was a fun season, and I think what brought us along together so well was we had no superstars. It was a team effort." A 4.0 student, she is considering education or physical therapy as possible college studies.

Coach of the Year

Denean Koontz. North Carroll: It is sometimes harder to coach a team that expects to do well than one that isn't. Koontz, a former county and metro coach of the year, is honored this time for clearing up some question marks on her team and guiding it to county, Central Maryland Conference and regional championships. The Panthers lost to Walter Johnson in the state semifinals and finished 14-2. "This coaching year actually came so easy because I was blessed with talent and good people," Koontz said. That's easy for her to say, but it still takes someone to direct traffic. The team had lost two all-county players, including its leading scorer, to graduation and there was a question of who would fill that void. It turned out to be seniors Jessica Bradford and Katie Mullinix, whose play earned all-county recognition. For much of the season, the coach, in her seventh season (71-20-5), blended five seniors, five juniors, and a freshman into a starting lineup.

First team at a glance

Becky Arnold, F.S. Key, junior, goalkeeper: er: As the county leader in goals allowed, she played a big part in the success of the Eagles (11-2-1). The team lost only to North Carroll and tied Middletown during the regular season. She allowed seven goals in 13 games, and one of her eight shutouts was against Class 3A champion Fallston. Of 77 shots faced, she had 67 saves or clears. She was an honorable mention on the All-State team.

Jessica Bradford, North Carroll, senior, forward: A second-team choice last year, she stepped up her efforts this year to become the leading goal-scorer for her team and the county with 16. There were also five assists. She asserted herself in the opening game of the season with two goals and went on to a half-dozen multiple-goal games. She was a second-team all-state selection, the only Carroll County player in this group.

Lisa Cavanaugh, Westminster, junior, defense: fense: A smart player and the team's defensive leader, she was able to throw the switch and start (or create when necessary) offensive attacks for her side by successfully thwarting offensive thrusts from the opposition. She had a knack for finding and passing to an open space for a teammate to get the ball. "A smart player with a high skill level and good game sense," said coach Brenda Baker.

Erin German, North Carroll, senior, midfield: field: A physical presence in the midfield, this wing and Meredith Gill took charge of the transition game. Her long drives could be counted on to bail the team out of a defensive situation as well as set up the offense.

Krissy Hill, Liberty, senior, defense: Equally at home in the midfield or on defense, she was one of the senior leaders who helped ease the transition to new coach Diana Weinapple. The Lions produced two more wins than a year ago (5-8), and after going 0-3 and 1-4, bounced back to win three in a row. Hill is a tough player who goes to the ball well. North Carroll could attest to this team's improvement, as it won the opener handily, 3-1, then struggled in getting a 2-1 victory in mid-October (the Lions played Westminster and North Carroll on successive days).

Katie Holmes, North Carroll, senior, defense: fense: The sweeper for a team that allowed a total of 10 goals in 16 games, and no more than two in any one of them, she was an excellent defender. What Holmes and her defensive mates didn't get, junior goalkeeper Devan Bosley did, and the result was nine shutouts, including three in the regionals, where the Panthers had an 8-0 scoring edge.

Stephanie Lawrence, F.S. Key, senior, forward: ward: An outstanding performer who always seemed to play best in the big games, she was a three-year all-county selection, and her team's leading scorer each year. She had 12 goals and two assists this season for career totals of 31 goals and 14 assists. The team captain earned honorable mention on the all-state squad.

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