Westminster keeps game in its hands, beats Liberty

Owls win 16 of 20 faceoffs

Baer scores 4 in 12-7 win

Boys lacrosse

April 28, 2002|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Trying to slow the quick-striking attack of the Westminster boys lacrosse team, opponents of late have employed a new weapon - zone defense.

As visiting Liberty found out yesterday, however, the Owls aren't yet ready to exit their own zone.

Continuing the best start in school history, Westminster got four goals from midfielder Brad Baer while controlling the ball for most of the way in a 12-7 victory over the Lions in a Carroll County and Central Maryland Conference game.

It was a far more inspired performance for the Owls than in Tuesday's 5-4 win against South Carroll, something coach Jim Peters attributes in part to better ball movement.

"People are throwing that zone against us to try and slow us down, but we scored 12 goals against the zone today, and we scored 14 against the zone against River Hill," Peters said. "There was something about that South Carroll game. They didn't run the zone any better than the other teams, but we just didn't work the ball as much as we should have."

Winning 16 of 20 faceoffs yesterday didn't hurt, either.

Led by faceoff men Chris Schwartz and Jon Hively, the Owls (11-0, 7-0 CMC, 5-0 county) dominated a team that hadn't lost the faceoff battle all season.

It was ball control that helped Westminster break out to a 4-0 lead in the first 13 minutes, then later break open a 6-4 game by scoring five of the next six.

Despite lagging behind the Owls in both manpower and experience, Liberty (6-4, 4-2, 2-2) held its own, remaining within striking distance for much of the game.

"You look at the depth and the number of players they can run in there, opposed to the number of players we can run in there, and I'm extremely proud of a 12-7 loss," said Liberty coach Sal Picataggi.

Westminster started quickly, with Andrew Gehringer and Matt Keating scoring back-to-back goals to give the Owls a 2-0 lead 2:37 into the game. The Owls extended that to 4-0 on a solo effort early in the second quarter by midfielder Matt Duke (one goal, four assists).

The Owls didn't pull away until early in the fourth, with Baer scoring back-to-back goals and Joe Mruk adding one to make it 11-5 with 6:17 left.

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