Liberty falls to Century, 18-12, for first county loss in six years

Girls lacrosse

High Schools

April 26, 2003|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Throughout their first varsity season, the Century Knights have made a dash toward the top of girls lacrosse in Carroll County.

Last night, they arrived.

The visiting Knights broke out to a big early lead, then held off hard-charging Liberty for an 18-12 win, handing the perennial-power Lions their first county defeat in six years.

"We really just made a name for ourselves this time," said sophomore Megan McGuire.

McGuire led the effort, scoring a game-high seven goals, including six in the first half, to go along with six from Kelly Kasper and five from Lauren Schwarzmann.

The Lions (7-5 overall, 2-1 county, 6-1 Central Maryland Conference) had last lost to a county opponent in 1997, when they dropped a pair of games to North Carroll. They have claimed the county title 12 of the past 13 seasons.

Last night, however, the game belonged to Century from the outset. Down 1-0, the Knights (8-0, 4-0, 5-0) reeled off six straight goals to seemingly take command.

"Confidence wise, that was everything," Century coach Rose Pentz said. "We needed to get off to a good start so that the girls felt confident that they belonged here and could compete. We've had so many games where we didn't really have to step up. Tonight, we needed to step up, and we did it."

Liberty, however, came right back. Led by Kristen Crutchfield (four goals) and Julie Roguski (three), the Lions scored five of the next six to cut the lead to 8-6 before Century, then closed the half with four straight goals.

Later, down 12-7, Liberty again rallied to pull within two before the Knights once more regrouped to pull away.

"I'm very happy with what I saw," Liberty coach Nicki Jones said. "No one gave up. They've come so far since [earlier in the season]. We talked about being the underdog, and I think we scared them sometimes."

In the end, it was Century's three-pronged attack of McGuire, Kasper and Schwarzmann that sealed the team's eighth straight win.

"One of us was double-teamed at all times, but by now we know where each other is and just work really well together," said McGuire.

Coming into this season, the abilities of Kasper and Schwarzmann - both former varsity players at South Carroll - were well known to most opponents. McGuire's ability to score, however, has given the Knights an extra dimension that has been difficult for opponents to handle.

"I wasn't sure who they were going to be focusing on," Pentz said. "I don't know if they forget about [McGuire], but somehow she always seems to step up and makes the big plays."

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