Eagles' DeJuliis to trade coaching for city police work

HOWARD NOTEBOOK

April 25, 1999|By Stan Rappaport | Stan Rappaport,SUN STAFF

The Baltimore City Police Department is running a background check on Centennial girls lacrosse coach Michele DeJuliis.

She hopes they like what they see.

DeJuliis wants to become a police officer in the city, and recently told her team that she will step down at the end of the season.

"I love teaching, but it's not as fulfilling as I thought it would be," said DeJuliis. "It's not what I need right now."

DeJuliis, a part-time physical education teacher at Centennial, said going into law enforcement was something she has considered for years.

Why Baltimore City?

"Because it's challenging and exciting," said the 5-foot-2 DeJuliis, who said she eventually would like to be transferred to a special unit in the city force or move to the DEA or FBI.

"People said to me, `Are you crazy,' " she said. "But as corny as it sounds, I would like to help and make a difference."

DeJuliis admitted she is somewhat "nervous" about her career. "I'm going to be a cop in the city. You never know what comes up," she said. "But it will be exciting."

DeJuliis, an All-American lacrosse player at Baltimore County's Loch Raven High School and Penn State University, is in her first year of high school coaching. The Eagles are 5-4 overall and tied for first place in the county with Mount Hebron at 4-0.

"I don't want her to leave, but it's amazing how much she's contributed to the team," said junior Kim Emrich. "She's helped us with our skills, taught us offensive and defensive positioning . . . pretty much everything."

DeJuliis is very passionate about the sport, and wanted her players to feel the same way. According to goalie Danielle Martin, DeJuliis accomplished that goal.

"She brought her love of lacrosse to the team," said Martin. "I think she helped us find it within ourselves."

Softball

Howard All-County pitcher Kelly O'Neill left last week's game against Centennial in the first inning after facing four batters. O'Neill, a senior right-hander, has tendinitis in her right forearm, and it became too painful for her to throw.

"I tried to pitch through it but it hurt too bad," said O'Neill.

O'Neill said she developed the tendinitis in ninth grade. "Once you have it you can't get rid of it," she said. "It will act up sometimes and my arm will get really swollen and ache."

O'Neill was replaced in the Centennial game by junior Lindsey Hasiuk. O'Neill left the game for two innings, then returned to play second base. She ended up getting the game-winning triple in the Lions' 4-3 victory.

Howard coach Dave Vezzi said O'Neill might return to the mound Wednesday when the Lions play host to River Hill.

Howard, which finished the first half a disappointing 5-4 in the county, has won two, one-run games to start the second half of the season.

After beating Centennial, 4-3, Tuesday, the Lions handed Atholton its first loss of the season, 4-3, on Thursday.

"We played up to our potential," said Vezzi. "Fundamentally, it was the best game we've played in two years up to the seventh inning."

Howard took a 4-2 lead into the seventh. A one-out fly ball off the bat of Sarah Costa was misplayed by left fielder Rah-nee Kelly, and courtesy runner Joy Belding took over at second base. Belding scored on Stacy DeFino's single.

Kelly Kemp followed with a ground ball to second base, but O'Neill bobbled the ball, and DeFino moved to second and Kemp was safe at first.

Hasiuk then got Jessica McDonaugh to hit a soft liner to O'Neill for the second out. Lauren Mickley worked the count to 3-2before hitting a grounder to Hasiuk, who threw to first to end the game.

Hasiuk gave up 13 hits, but always got the big out when she needed it.

"She did a really good job," said Atholton coach John Zitko. "She's very good at changing speeds."

Howard finally got some timely hitting against the Raiders, something it didn't have in the first half of the season. In the fourth, Kelly singled and scored on Kim Palmer's triple. Jessica Burns laid down a perfect bunt down the first-base line that scored Palmer.

The Lions added a run in the fifth when Sarah Berg hit a two-out double and scored on Kelly's double.

Palmer led off the sixth with a single and moved to second on a hit-and-run ground ball. An infield grounder by Hasiuk moved Palmer to third, and she scored what proved to be the winning run on Shannon Tracy's single.

The victory was a good confidence builder for the Lions, who lost to Atholton, 5-4, earlier this season.

"I don't think we can win the county because we have four losses," Hasiuk said. "We just wanted to show them that we could beat them. We just went out there and did our best."

Said Vezzi: "We know we've had four tough losses that, with a break here or there, could have been four wins. Hopefully, things will start to break even."

Both coaches said each team played exceptional defense, including an excellent catch by Atholton center fielder Erin Caffrey.

Zitko said the loss was a "positive" in one way, "because we don't have to worry about that undefeated record anymore."

Zitko and his wife, Christa, celebrated the birth of their second child on Wednesday. Makenah Lynn Zitko was born at Howard County General, weighing 7 pounds, 1 ounce and measuring 18 1/4 inches. The Zitkos have another daughter, Ellen, who is 3.

Standings

Here are the current county standings for softball, girls lacrosse and tennis:

Softball: Atholton 10-1, Wilde Lake 10-1, River Hill 8-3, Howard 7-4, Long Reach 5-5, Mount Hebron 4-6, Glenelg 4-7, Centennial 4-7, Hammond 1-9, Oakland Mills 0-10.

Girls lacrosse: Mount Hebron 4-0, Centennial 4-0, Glenelg 3-1, River Hill 3-1, Hammond 2-2, Atholton 2-2, Oakland Mills 1-3, Wilde Lake 1-3, Howard 0-4, Long Reach 0-4.

Tennis: Wilde Lake 10-0, Centennial 9-1, River Hill 9-2, Mount Hebron 8-2, Glenelg 5-6, Atholton 5-6, Long Reach 2-8, Hammond 2-8, Howard 1-9, Oakland Mills 0-9.

Pub Date: 4/25/99

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