Going into yesterday's showdown at River Hill, Mount Hebron's All-Metro goalkeeper, Greg Peters, had seven shutouts and had allowed just eight goals.
The No. 6-ranked Vikings, defending Howard County champions, were hoping to duplicate last season's upset of the Hawks in which Peters had an outstanding game as Mount Hebron handed Class 2A state champion River Hill its only loss.
Instead, No. 2-ranked River Hill (11-1 overall, 7-1 league) used quick counterattacks to score twice in the first 21 minutes en route to an easy, 5-1 victory that virtually knocked Mount Hebron out of the county championship picture with one league game left.
Both River Hill and Oakland Mills would have to lose their Tuesday games against Howard and Centennial, respectively, and the Vikings would have to defeat Wilde Lake to create a three-way tie.
"This was the best game we've played all season," said All-Met striker Adom Crew, who helped create River Hill's first two goals by turning the corner on quick counterattacks and setting up two eventual goals.
Justin Gotis scored the first goal from the 6-yard line on an assist from Cliff Jackson in the 18th minute. Crew's cross started the play.
Scott Buescher scored the second goal from about a yard away on a rebound of a Crew shot that glanced off the post in the 21st minute.
In between those goals, Mount Hebron's Brian Swiech hit the Hawks' crossbar.
The Vikings (10-3, 6-2) countered the second River Hill goal with a goal in the 36th minute. Stopper Max Marcotic booted a beautiful 20-yard shot into the upper corner of the near post off a deflection by a River Hill defender.
On a third quick counterattack, however, Hawks midfielder Greg Hinkle sent a 20-yard shot off Peters that rolled slowly into the goal in the 40th minute for a 3-1 River Hill halftime lead.
"We knew Peters wasn't going to have another game like he had last year," said Hawks midfielder Brett Endler.
Hinkle scored again in the 60th minute on a header off Endler's 22-yard direct kick. And Buescher scored again off an assist from Crew in the 70th minute.
"All five of their goals were scored by unmarked men," Mount Hebron coach Jeff Doolan said. "Our midfield defense didn't mark up and they capitalized on our mistakes. We obviously have some work to do. We had chances early and didn't capitalize."
Mount Hebron's top scorer, David Lechtrecker, went unmarked the first 10 minutes and created some dangerous situations before marking backs Kyle O'Brien and Bryce Yetso took turns at shutting him out.
"O'Brien and Yetso did a nice job and we finished well and that's what it was all about," Hawks coach Bill Stara said.
Pub Date: 10/23/99