Kasper keeps Century going

Goal with :03 left earns 10-9 win over S. Carroll

Class 2A-1A West regional girls lacrosse final

High Schools

May 20, 2004|By Rich Scherr | Rich Scherr,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Four years after beginning her high school career as an unassuming member of the South Carroll varsity, Kelly Kasper last night stepped back onto the field where it all began. By game's end, the Century senior also had stepped into the annuls of Carroll County lacrosse history.

With her No. 11 Knights fighting for their playoff lives against host South Carroll, Kasper's free position goal with three seconds left put the exclamation point on an unparalleled career, giving Century a 10-9 win in the Class 2A-1A West regional final.

"For my money, she's the best that has ever played in this county," said South Carroll coach Mac Kantruss.

Kasper finished with four goals and an assist to go with two goals and an assist from fellow All-Metro midfielder Lauren Schwarzmann.

Century (15-2) advances to the 2A-1A state semifinals, where it will face Glenelg, a 14-7 winner over Atholton, on either Friday or Saturday at Southern of Anne Arundel. There, the Knights will be in search of their second straight trip to the state title game.

"They want it bad," said Century coach Rose Pentz. "I think each and every time they're playing a game, they're think they're one step closer. There's so much regret not having won last year after getting all the way there. They can just taste it."

Early on, this one looked to be a rout.

Century, which just last month had beaten South Carroll, 18-5, looked dominant in the opening minutes, getting unassisted goals in the first five minutes from Kasper, Schwarzmann and Jenny Steadman. Megan McGuire's goal off a feed from Kasper gave the Knights a 4-0 lead just over 10 minutes in.

Down 6-2, South Carroll (13-4) began to turn the tide, winning faceoffs, keeping possession and getting consecutive goals by Jes Chmielewski and Stephanie Kisic with under two minutes left in the half to cut the lead to 6-4.

"We settled down some, then we knew we had to take it to the goal hard," Kantruss said. "We came out a little tentative, but then we righted the ship."

After trailing the entire way, the Cavaliers pulled even when Kerrie Wuenschel (three goals) bounced in a free position with 11:51 left. The teams then traded scores before Century got one last possession.

Kasper waxed poetic about her final game in Carroll County, on the field where it all started.

"I was talking to [South Carroll athletic director Jim Horn] and he said, `This is where you started your career,'" said Kasper, referring to a pre-game conversation. "I said, `I hope it's not where I finish it.'"

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