North Carroll jumps out to 18-4 win over F.S. Key

Panthers score 8 in row in game's first 11 minutes

Girls lacrosse

March 26, 2002|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

North Carroll girls lacrosse coach Amy Eggers believes her senior-laden team has the requisite experience to play with any squad in Carroll County this season, including perennial power Liberty.

Last night, her Panthers gave a glimpse of that potential.

Facing a Francis Scott Key team returning most of its defense from a year ago, host North Carroll didn't take long to heat up in blustery Hampstead, scoring eight straight goals in the game's first 11 minutes on their way to a convincing 18-4 win in the season-opener for both teams.

"For a first game in the cold, it's a good start," Eggers said, "but we've got a lot to work on."

Lauren Therit scored a game-high seven goals, and Kara Meekins and Maria Humphries added five and four, respectively, as the Panthers (1-0 overall, 1-0 county) used crisp passing to consistently penetrate Key's zone defense.

"Instead of running the ball down the field, we were just midfield transitioning all the way down the field - passing, passing, passing," Meekins said. "That allowed us to get open on offense."

The game opened a new era for the Panthers, marking the first time in seven years they've taken the field without either All-County midfielder Lacey Hentz or her older sister, attacker Kellyn Hentz, two of the area's most dominant players in recent seasons.

Lacey Hentz graduated last spring, two years after her sister.

"No one's like Lacey - she's like the best player I've ever seen in my life - but we have a lot of returning players," said Meekins, referring to the team's 14 returning varsity players. "We weren't sure how we were going to come out. We had no idea what was going to happen, but we brought it together out here."

Eggers said she was pleased the way her team cut to get open and made crisp passes - two things she said the Panthers will need to continue doing in order to improve on last year's 8-6 season.

"We need distribution," Eggers said. "We can't just have one go-to person. We need to have give or six different people who can put it in. People have to step it up."

Senior Emily Doxzon led Francis Scott Key (0-1, 0-1) with three goals. For the Eagles, who won just three games a year ago, but suffered several losses by slim margins, the outcome was a sign that there's still plenty of room for improvement.

For North Carroll, which last year threw a scare into Liberty before falling, 13-10, in the Class 3A-2A North quarterfinals, it was an indication of the possibilities that may lie ahead.

The rematch is scheduled for April 23 in Eldersburg.

"Any team in this county can compete against any other team on any day," Eggers said.

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