No. 1 Gilman masters basics, tops Boys' Latin

Ground balls, faceoffs are winning key, 14-12

St. Paul's tops St. Mary's

High Schools

March 26, 2000|By Edward Lee | Edward Lee,SUN STAFF

Scoring goals is a necessity in boys lacrosse, but ground balls were the difference for Gilman.

In a matchup between the area's two best lacrosse programs, the top-ranked and visiting Greyhounds slipped past No. 2 Boys' Latin, 14-12, yesterday.

Although Lakers senior attack Brian Nee led all scorers with seven goals and senior attack Dan LaMonica contributed a goal and four assists, Gilman improved to 2-0 in the MIAA A Conference and 3-0 overall by dominating ground balls (51-37) and faceoffs (20-10).

"It's not rocket science," said Greyhounds coach Dave Allen. "The team that controls the ball can score."

Lakers coach Bob Shriver agreed: "We played pretty hard, but in all the contested situations, we didn't pick up the ground balls. We didn't have the ball enough to score."

Senior attack Andrew Lucas, who will play for North Carolina next year, led Gilman with five goals -- all in the second half -- and his attackmate, Princeton-bound senior Ryan Boyle, recorded two goals and five assists.

Boyle said he thought the key was the faceoff work of senior defender Franko Gould and senior midfielder Lance Zimmerman.

"Once we started controlling the faceoffs, we didn't throw the ball away," Boyle said. "We really valued the ball, and we were much more patient on offense so that we could get better shots."

The Greyhounds scored three goals in 1: 32 to build a 14-9 lead with 6: 56 left in the game. But Nee pumped new life into Boys' Latin, scoring three straight goals and making it 14-12 with 1: 29 left.

But Gilman won the ensuing faceoff and ran down the clock to seal the victory.

St. Paul's 9, St. Mary's 7: It was not the prettiest effort, but fourth-ranked St. Paul's did enough to upend No. 3 St. Mary's in the Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference.

The Crusaders relied on solid defense against the Saints' offensive standouts, senior goalkeeper Paul Spellman's 15 saves and a 14-4 advantage in faceoffs.

"We knew going in that a lot of the game would revolve around one-on-one defense," Spellman said. "We have the best defense in the league and I think we showed that today."

The Crusaders (1-1) also showed why they might have the finest faceoff unit in the league. By winning 14 of 18 draws, midfielders Jack deVilliers, Scott Boyle and Ethan Haire more than made up for St. Paul's sometimes sloppy ball movement. "We play a run-and-gun game, so we tend to make a few turnovers," said senior attack Conor Ford, who led the Crusaders with two goals and three assists. "But if we keep getting the ball, we have more chances to put it in the net. Fourteen of 18 is pretty good. That will get it done any time."

St. Mary's (1-1) went up 3-1 early, but the Crusaders' Brendan Gill scored off a nifty deVilliers assist with 19 seconds left in the first period to spark a 6-0 run. The Saints went scoreless for 26: 46, during which the Crusaders built a lead they did not relinquish.

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