No. 11 Loyola men pace show of soccer strength

W. Md. has best mark in men's soccer in 75 years

Maryland Colleges


November 01, 2001|By Bill Free | Bill Free,SUN STAFF

There's a collegiate soccer explosion throughout the state.

At Loyola, the men's team is 13-1-2 and ranked No. 11 in the country. The Greyhounds are among the nation's elite for the sixth straight week since defeating Maryland, 1-0, in College Park on Sept. 19.

Loyola is rated No. 2 in the South Atlantic regional poll behind Virginia, which is ranked No. 2 in the country. The Greyhounds have a new standout, freshman Kevin Nash, who was just named the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Rookie of the Week for the second time this season.

Certainly, the 11-3-1 Towson men have been impressive as they have battled Boston University to a tie for first place in America East (both 7-1-1) heading into this weekend's final two league games.

The Tigers play at Northeastern tomorrow and at Boston University on Sunday in a likely showdown for the league title. Towson has 48 goals, only one short of the school single-season record.

Towson senior Alfonso DeMares is concluding a spectacular collegiate career, breaking the school mark for all-time assists with 34 and tying All-American Wayne Harman (1953-56) for the school career points lead with 120 (43 goals, 34 assists). DeMares has 13 goals and nine assists this season.

Navy is 9-2-3, even though the Midshipmen lost to a strong Lehigh team Saturday on the road.

UMBC's men, at 9-5-2 after yesterday's 1-0 loss at George Mason, have qualified for their fourth straight, four-team Northeast Conference tournament.

At Mount St. Mary's (5-8-3), senior goalkeeper Brian Crum has four shutouts in his team's five victories. Crum has a 1.48 goals-against-average, and a 74.3 save percentage.

D-III has game, too

NCAA Division III soccer is seeing fireworks involving area men's teams, as well.

The big surprise is Western Maryland, which is cutting into some of the fall headlines usually reserved for the football team. Coach John Plevyak's Green Terror is 13-4 overall, the best mark in 75 years of soccer at the school. Western Maryland, 6-3 in the Centennial Conference, is seeded second in the league's four-team tournament that opens tomorrow night at Homewood Field, home of top-seeded Johns Hopkins.

Plevyak said eight seniors have played a major role in the record-breaking run: goalkeeper Ryan Defibaugh, midfielders Pat Danaher (Hereford), Tom Long (Francis Scott Key), Scott Smith and Brad Russell, forwards Cabot Goodrum and Vinny Pedalino and sweeper Barclay Losse. The co-captains are Long and Pedalino.

Hopkins (16-2, 9-0) will meet fourth-seeded Gettysburg at 5 p.m. tomorrow; Western Maryland will test Muhlenberg at 7:30 in the other Centennial semifinal at Homewood. The winners will play for the title at 6 p.m. Saturday.

In addition, Salisbury University's 15-3 soccer team is headed for the Capital Athletic Conference title game after yesterday's 2-1 win over York. Junior forward Matt Brown has established a school single-season record of 18 goals.

Towson 25-1 in volleyball

Towson's volleyball team has swept a school-record 16 straight match victories (10-0 in America East) and improved to a glittering 25-1. That record gives the Tigers a .962 winning percentage, which is topped nationally only by No. 1-ranked Long Beach State (18-0) and Colorado State (19-0).

Peters keeps winning

Coppin State's Nickie Peters has won another major cross country race, raising his record to 7-0. Peters outran 73 competitors for the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference championship last weekend in Greensboro, N.C. Peters covered the 8-kilometer course in 25 minutes, 28 seconds - 20 seconds ahead of runner-up Joseph Terer of Norfolk State.

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