Teams at a glance

September 02, 1999|By Rick Belz

Atholton Raiders

1998 record: 0-15 overall, 0-9 league

Coach: Roch DeFrancis

Classification: 2A

Top players: Justin Pak, senior, D; Chris Fox, senior, GK; Nick Zaron, junior, D; Jamie Hollander, junior, MF; Zach Silverman, sophomore, M/F; Chad Patee, sophomore, M; Jerome DeFrancis, freshman, M/D; Kevin Daciek, freshman, M.

Outlook: Despite a turnout of just 15 players, the Raiders should be a better team with a returning nucleus featuring the speedy Pak and unheralded sweeper Zaron, who along with second-year goalkeeper Fox create a strong defense. The Raiders were shut out six times last fall, lost six games by one goal, and six by two goals. The addition of two talented freshmen, Daciek and DeFrancis, the coach's son, should help offensively. But the coach is still looking fruitlessly for speedy wing forwards to run with Pak. The Raiders have a new non-league schedule that features Sparrows Point and Pallotti instead of Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference teams Archbishop Spalding and Mount St. Joseph. The closest Atholton came to a victory last season was a 2-1 overtime loss to Long Reach, the same team that defeated them in the regional playoffs, 1-0.

Centennial Eagles

1998 record: 7-5-3 overall, 4-3-2 league

Coach: Jim Zehe

Top players: Randy Van Allen, senior, D; Eric Long, senior, D; Todd Sajauskas, senior, D; Nate Zachman, junior, M; Greg White, junior, M; Greg Wallace, junior, M; Paul Krausman, junior, GK; Phil Kiacofe, senior, F; Vincent Clay, sophomore, F.

Outlook: Zehe, 29, is optimistic about his team's chances. "We hope to bust out of the middle of the pack," he said. "We worked hard in the off-season. And if we continue to progress, I expect we'll contend for the county championship." The Eagles, who graduated four starters (Mike Dramby, Mike Martin, Charles Lin and Charlie Crosby), have a trio of experienced junior midfielders in Wallace, White and Zachman. Their goalkeeper, Krausman, saw some playing time last season. Zehe thinks Krausman would have started for most teams. Van Allen, one of the county's tallest players at 6-4, has switched from striker to defense. "He looks spectacular back there," Zehe said. He joins Sajauskas, Long and sophomore Matt Hashimoto in back. Clay, who plays club ball for the Baltimore Bays, has added some size to go with his speed and skills. Zehe also expects help from a 10-0-2 JV. The Eagles have replaced Glenelg Country School with No. 9-ranked Patapsco.

Chapelgate Christian Flames

1998 record: 16-5

Coach: Rob Van Ness

League: MIAA C Conference champs

Top players: Andy Hayman, junior, M; Brendan Ricketts, senior, M; Matt Trail, senior, D; Josh Stark, senior, F; John Bennett, senior, D; Erik Christensen, senior, D; Sean Wybenga, junior, F.

Outlook: This is a rebuilding year, although the Flames return nine players, five of them starters. Their biggest need is a goalkeeper. The defense looks strong with Trail at sweeper and Bennett at stopper. Van Ness thinks it will take a while to create the cohesiveness of last year's team and that winning a third straight C Conference title will be a challenge.

Glenelg Gladiators

1998 record: 5-10-1 overall, 1-7-1 league

Coach: Peter Klisas

Classification: 1A

Top players: Jason Weszka, senior, D; Taylor Faris, senior D; Evan Lawrence, senior, M; Greg Moore, junior F; Evan Kuba, junior M; Phillip Rub, junior, M; David Dorsey, junior M; Corey Shea, sophomore, GK, Connor Nixon, sophomore, F/MA.

Outlook: A young Gladiator team that was outclassed by the top four county teams last season hopes to come of age and close that gap. The No. 1 goal, however, will be more league wins. "We've improved quite a bit," Klisas said. The Gladiators will still be young, with just four seniors and as many as four freshmen. But the defense looks solid with Weszka, Faris and Shea. Klisas touts Shea as one of the county's best goalkeepers. The team also has some quality depth. A sixth-place league finish would be a reasonable expectation, and the Gladiators, state champs two years ago, will aim to upset defending state champ Oakland Mills in the Class 1A playoffs.

Glenelg Country School Dragons

1998 record: 9-10

Coach: Craig Shales

League: MIAA C Conference

Top players: Kolin Leishman, senior, M; Adam Weinrub, sophomore, M; Pat Allinson, sophomore, M; Tony Dolgoff, junior, F; C. J. Bowles, senior, GK; Matt Woodford, senior, D; Andrew Schroeder, senior, D; Adam Hoffman, senior, D; Ryan Soule, sophomore, D.

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