Glenelg overpowers River Hill

Dougherty's four goals lead way to 9-5 triumph

Boys lacrosse

High School

March 29, 2001|By Kevin Van Valkenburg | Kevin Van Valkenburg,SUN STAFF

Glenelg midfielder Ben Dougherty might not like to hear it, but against River Hill yesterday, he wasn't quite as good as advertised.

He was even better.

That can happen when you score four goals and hand out an assist, as Dougherty did against River Hill in a 9-5 victory on the Gladiators' home field.

Equal parts ballerina and bully, the ever humble Dougherty anchored Glenelg's fluid offense, finished its scoring chances and made sure there were no questions about the Gladiators' intensity, hip-checking more than a few Hawks defenders who got in his path for loose balls. That was important, he said, because Glenelg's inner fire seemed to flicker out in the second half of a 10-9 overtime loss to North Carroll Monday.

"We played a good first half against North Carroll, but then we let them come back and beat us," Dougherty said. "We were going to make sure that didn't happen this time out."

River Hill played solid defense, especially in stretches, but Glenelg won the tight battles for ground balls, which gave it more possessions, shots and chances.

"They killed us on ground balls. It wasn't just that they got a few more, they killed us," said River Hill coach Keith Gonsouland. "I told our guys that whoever possessed the ball more would win, and that's what happened."

Goals by Zach Burford and Dougherty helped the Gladiators open a 2-0 first-quarter lead, but Hawks attackman Paul Minutoli kept things close by scoring twice in the second, both on nice passes from midfielder Brian Maggio. But Glenelg's ability to switch gears - going smash-mouth on defense, then patiently working the ball around on offense - proved to be the difference.

To open the second half, Dougherty took a nice pass from Shane Baxter after working behind the goal on a screen and beat Will Melton up high. A few minutes later, after a Maggio score, Dougherty found Pat Beal in front for a goal to make it 6-3, and Baxter got into the act as well, scoring to end the third period.

"Our focus is to really move the ball as a team, and when we do that, I think we're going to find shots," Dougherty said. "We scored because we passed the ball and found the openings."

"We need to learn to be more consistent," Gonsouland said. "We're hustling, and I don't question our heart, but we're still learning to think out there. Luckily, it's still early."

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