Teams at a glance

March 20, 2000|By Edward Lee

Carroll Christian Patriots

1999 record: N/A

Coach: Lucille Cole

Top players: Alexis Cole, Sr., P; Lissette Acosta, Jr., P; Renee Coglianese, Sr., SS; Jen Buczkowski, Jr., OF; Kristi Siep, Jr., C.


Francis Scott Key Eagles

1999 record: 14-5

Coach: Joe Linthicum

Top players: Meredith Carter, Jr., P; Misti Myers, Sr., P; Jenny Amass, Sr., 2B; Ashley Norris, Jr., C/1B; Kelly Miller, Jr., 3B/SS.

Outlook: The Eagles are eager to wipe away last year's painful first-round exit from the playoffs. Fortunately, they return one of the top pitching staffs in the area in Myers and Carter. Myers was an All-County honorable-mention choice last season, while Carter went 7-1 with a 0.94 ERA and 72 strikeouts on her way to first-team All-County honors. Despite eight returning players, Linthicum lost three-fourths of his infield to graduation. While the defense tries to jell quickly, Linthicum hopes to get more run production from his first three batters -- Amass, senior outfielder Jessica Barley and senior outfielder Casey Henry, another All-County honorable-mention selection.

Liberty Lions

1999 record: 7-13

Coach: Nora Murray

Top players: Theresa Jason, Sr., CF; Tina Warholic, Sr., C/SS; Robyn McCormick, Sr., OF/IF; Stephanie Wilder, Sr., 1B; Kate Hartman, Sr., 2B.

Outlook: Four years ago, Murray began a rebuilding program, and the culmination of that work appears to be this season's Lions. Murray lost only one of her nine starters -- third baseman Tara Shoemaker -- from last season's squad and has seven seniors in her lineup. Jason is expected to be the offensive leader, and Murray believes that defense -- anchored by Wilder and Hartman, both of whom were All-County honorable-mention players last year -- will be the team's strength. To reach the state semifinals, Liberty will have to pass Damascus, which has knocked the Lions out of the regionals the past two seasons.

North Carroll Panthers

1999 record: 20-2

Coach: Lloyd Ford

Top players: Lisa Tunney, Sr., P; Bethany Reeb, Sr., C; Trish Brown, Jr., 2B; Tiffany Langan, Sr., CF; Candice Jeffery, Sr., 1B.

Outlook: Ford has two difficult tasks ahead of him: replacing Rich Harvey who left to coach at a high school in Hanover, Pa., and matching last year's run to the Class 3A state championship final. Fortunately, Ford has eight returning players -- six of whom are seniors. Brown, a first-team All-County pick as a sophomore, batted .347 with five doubles and nine RBIs. Reeb and Jeffery were All-County honorable-mention choices last season. But the Panthers lost five seniors to graduation -- including 1999 Carroll County Player of the Year Katie Mullinix and three other first-team All-County selections -- and every team will want to knock off a state runner-up.

South Carroll Cavaliers

1999 record: 5-12

Coach: Debbie Eaton

Top players: Emily Wolfing, Jr., P; Ashley Taylor, Jr., P; Kim Bowers, Sr., 2B; Gina Arnone, Sr., 1B/OF; Daneille Caballero, Sr., 3B.

Outlook: One of the teams looking to upend North Carroll is the Cavaliers, who were ousted from the regionals by the Panthers last season. With seven returning players, Eaton believes the team's advantage will come from the mound. Both Taylor, an honorable-mention All-County pick, and Wolfing averaged almost a strikeout per inning last year. South Carroll has some speed on the base paths with sophomore shortstop Abby Cannistracci and sophomore outfielder Jamie Janowich. The one concern is hitting. Caballero has the best batting average (.282) among returners, and Eaton says her lineup is filled with contact hitters, not power batters.

Westminster Owls

1999 record: 8-9

Coach: Lisa Harford

Top players: Nichol Moeller, So., P; Casey Brengle, So., C; Amy Gorsuch, Sr., 3B; JoAnnah Jennings, Sr., SS; Carriebeth Myers, Sr., CF.

Outlook: Fresh from an encouraging fifth-place finish in the Central Maryland Conference, the Owls already are faced with adversity. Starting first baseman Kris Roulette was in a car accident a couple of months ago and is out for the season. Harford -- who has nine returners from last year's varsity squad -- has moved junior Kasey Owings from center field to first base and is relying on her six seniors to provide some on-field leadership. Moeller will be complemented by senior Heather Sinclair, and team speed has improved. Westminster has offered glimmers of hope, including handing conference champion Frederick its lone loss last season.

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