Carroll-Frederick county matchups promise excitement


High Schools

January 07, 2000|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,SUN STAFF

Basketball fans debating which game to attend might be in a bit of a quandary tonight.

Do they drive to Union Bridge to watch Monocacy Valley Athletic League leader Francis Scott Key play host to Brunswick, which is ranked fourth among Class 1A schools in the state?

Or do they travel to Westminster to catch the Owls, ranked 19th in The Sun, face defending Class 3A state champion Thomas Johnson?

Either option promises an exciting matchup between Carroll and Frederick county programs that have earned early accolades.

Francis Scott Key is 7-3 this season and 6-0 in the MVAL. Senior guard Jen Sawyer leads the Eagles in points (11.7 per game) and junior forward Sam Stambaugh is averaging more than nine points and seven rebounds a game.

But the Railroaders are 6-2 and also undefeated in the MVAL. Brunswick is led by senior forward Jamie Cable, who has scorched opposing defenses for almost 30 points per game.

Eagles coach Alice Smith said her squad must contain Cable and capitalize on the offensive end.

"The key will be getting back on defense to stop their main player," Smith said. "And we've been working on moving the ball around the perimeter and finding our players in the holes."

On the boys side, Thomas Johnson is 2-0 in the Central Maryland Conference and 6-1 overall -- with their only loss coming at the hands of nationally-ranked Rice of New York.

Ranked fifth in the state, the Patriots are led by the trio of junior forward Marcus West (19 points per game), sophomore guard Jermaine Thomas (14 ppg) and senior guard Adam Dickman (10 ppg).

But the Owls have strung together a five-game unbeaten streak, including a 66-52 defeat of Liberty Tuesday. And Westminster has already beaten a top-ranked team, handing St. Maria Goretti, the then-No. 10 private school in the state, a 62-54 loss on Dec. 23.

Owls coach Dave Byers said he hopes his team is not spooked by Thomas Johnson's reputation.

"I hope they don't play the ghosts of Terence Morris and those players of the past," Byers said, alluding to the Patriots alum who is a junior forward for 12th-ranked Maryland. "It's bad enough playing the current five they have now."

Komar headed to Arkansas

This fall, Mandy Komar will be trading her Owls blue for Razorbacks red.

The senior midfielder who led Westminster to its first state Class 4A soccer championship in school history has signed a letter of intent to play for Arkansas.

Komar, a first-team All-Metro selection and the Carroll County player of the year, picked Arkansas over Maryland, Penn State and Towson.

"I liked their facilities and their team's attitude, and they had the nursing program I want to major in," she said. "Plus, I get a little independence out there."

Komar recently returned from Miami, where her club team, the Bethesda Scorpions, captured the Millennium bracket of the Orange Bowl Classic during the Christmas holiday.

The team lost its first three games, but turned things around with an upset of the under-17 national champs, the Colorado Rush, in the quarterfinals.

The Scorpions then beat teams from Georgia and Texas to win the tournament.

At Arkansas, Komar will join former Maryland women's soccer coach Alan Kirkup, who led Arkansas to a 7-12 record last fall.

Komar has been told by the coaching staff at Arkansas that she could start in the midfield in her freshman year.

Her Westminster coach, Bryan Shumaker, said Komar's potential is limitless.

"I'm sure she's going to do exciting things out there," he said. "I look forward to see her name in the future."

Bowling Brook suspension

Senior heavyweight Mike Price has been suspended indefinitely from Bowling Brook for disciplinary reasons.

Price, an All-County wrestler last season, had compiled a 15-1 record with 12 pins. But Thoroughbreds coach Jim Tavenner, who declined to elaborate on the reasons behind the dismissal, said the suspension was necessary.

"It's disappointing, but it's a decision that the coaches made," Tavenner said. "It's something we felt we needed to do for the team and Mike."

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