Centennial plays physical in 10-6 win over River Hill

Eagles still in the hunt for 3rd county title in row

Boys lacrosse

High Schools

April 30, 2004|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Two-time defending county boys lacrosse champion Centennial beat visiting River Hill, 10-6, yesterday in a battle of Class 3A rivals.

It was a physical game, but the Eagles didn't want to get too physical with the Hawks.

After all, River Hill holds the key to Centennial's hopes for a third straight county title and they want them at full strength for next week.

The Hawks, who entered yesterday's game like Centennial (8-2 overall, 6-1 league) with one league loss, will play league-leading Glenelg next Thursday. A Hawks win would create the possibility of a shared title for Centennial.

Glenelg, unbeaten in league play, nipped Centennial earlier this season by two goals. "River Hill has a good, physical defense and offensive players that can play," said Eagles attacking midfielder Eric Meekins, who dominated faceoffs early against the Hawks. "They could beat Glenelg, and we certainly hope they do."

Meekins, who scored one goal and had one assist, but had five goals in a 16-8 win against Wilde Lake Tuesday, was frustrated by River Hill goalkeeper Mike Bogdanor's exceptional performance.

"Some of my best shots that normally would fall against any other goalkeeper weren't falling," said Meekins. "He definitely kept them in the game."

Bogdanor, a 6-foot-4, 205-pound junior, made 25 saves, some exceptional, as Centennial outshot River Hill 42-16.

"It's hard to claim to have had a good game when you lose," said Bogdanor. "Maybe I'm being hard on myself, but if I let up a goal, then that's not good enough."

River Hill coach Keith Gonsouland called Bogdanor "as good as anyone around."

Bogdanor takes up a lot of space in goal and has been coached for three years by one of the best goalkeepers in the area, J.J. Pearl of the Mt. Washington lacrosse club and formerly of the Baltimore Thunder.

For the game, eight Eagles scored goals.

Centennial built a 6-1 lead late in the second quarter, as the Hawks struggled offensively, getting outshot 9-1 to start the game.

"Winning ground balls and faceoffs early made the difference," said Meekins, who teamed with Keith Fisher and Nick Angle to win more than their share.

River Hill (5-5, 4-2) had trouble clearing the ball in the first half.

"We watched tapes and knew their clear was a bit disorganized," said Meekins. "So we worked a lot on riding. We cleared well. It was a physical game. A fun game."

River Hill rallied for two goals in the last 1:19 of the second quarter to trail 6-3 at halftime.

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