Westminster's Smith pacing offense

Junior says experience from last year is paying off


April 10, 2005|By Rich Scherr and Jeff Seidel | Rich Scherr and Jeff Seidel,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

Last season, his first on the varsity, was an eye-opener for Westminster attackman Pat Smith, who was shocked by the speed of the game compared to the junior varsity level.

So far this season, however, it's Smith who's opening eyes, picking up a large part of the offensive slack left by the graduation of 15 seniors. Through his first two games as a starter, Smith had scored a team-high 10 goals, including six in a season-opening 11-3 win over Winters Mill.

The junior says his experience last year, when he played a key role coming off the bench, is now paying dividends.

"I learned a lot from last year," Smith said. "I didn't start or anything, but I still played more than half the game. I just learned so much more than I did on JV. It's so much quicker up here than it is on JV. When I first moved up, I was just shocked."

His production will be critical on a team that, coming into this season, appeared to be stacked on defense, but possibly a bit thin on the attack. Through their first two games, however, last year's Class 4A-3A state finalists had outshot opponents, 75-38.

"This year it's going to be more of a team, and not just individuals," said Smith, adding that little else has changed. "We pretty much still have all the same formations as last year. We're just moving the ball a lot better."

Aside from Smith's scoring, the Owls (2-0) also have gotten plenty of offensive production from senior Brandon Johnson (five goals) and junior Ryan Finch (four assists).

"We know that we lost a lot of people from last year, but everyone is just stepping up and playing good together," said Smith.

So close and yet ...

Less than two minutes away from a victory against No. 11 Glenelg on Monday, the unranked Century girls lacrosse team was left hanging when referees called the game because of darkness.

The end came with the Knights ahead 9-6 and 1:50 left until the game could be considered official, meaning 80 percent complete. With Century's stadium lights not working, both sides had agreed before the game to allow the referees to call the game because of darkness.

"They called it and we agreed to it, so that was the way it was going to be," said Century coach Rose Pentz.

Under high school rules, the only way now to complete the game would be to start it from scratch. Pentz said that athletic director Craig Walker was attempting to set up a rematch for this week, the only possible time this season that the Knights could add a game.

She said that her players are nonetheless treating it as a victory.

"It actually was a confidence-builder, because they knew it was going to be a tough game and they felt very good about our play," Pentz said. "If they played it again, they felt very confident that they would win."

Spring forward

After a quiet indoor track and field season, Century senior Teresa Yannone demonstrated why she is a two-time All-County selection in outdoor track and field at the Seahawk Invitational at South River last Saturday.

Yannone, the county Performer of the Year in 2003 and defending Class 2A state titlist in the long jump, took the same event at Saturday's meet, leaping 14 feet, 4 inches for the crown.

Yannone also won the triple jump with a mark of 30-7.

Yannone's teammate, junior Dana Reeser, reasserted her dominance in the shot put. Reeser, the reigning Class 2A state champion in the event, captured the shot put with a heave of 38-5.

North Carroll junior Tinsley Stokes placed second in the high jump (4-10), while sophomore Sam McCardell was a runner-up in the 100 (13.1 seconds).

North Carroll senior Tim Wunderlich had first-place showings in the shot put with a throw of 47 feet, 5 inches and the discus throw with a heave of 133-5.

He also finished third in the long jump (17-7 1/2 ).

Century senior Dyron Johnson tied for first place in the 100-meter dash, finishing with Paint Branch's Quadell Spratley in 11.4 seconds.

Johnson's teammate, senior Justin Mudgett, finished second in both the shot put (43-4) and the discus throw (122-8 3/4 ).

Ups and downs

The North Carroll baseball team started the year 2-2, but was only two innings away from being 4-0.

The Panthers beat Francis Scott Key, 3-2, and also pulled out an 8-5 win over Linganore. But North Carroll suffered a 7-6 loss to defending Class 2A state champion Liberty - blowing a three-run lead in the sixth - and fell to Urbana (7-2) because of costly sixth-inning errors.

"It's early in the season, and we're playing for May, so hopefully the mistakes we're making we learn from and correct them and move on," said North Carroll coach Denny Snyder.

Both losses were painful. Against Liberty, two sixth-inning errors helped the Lions score four times and overcome a 6-3 deficit. The Panthers suffered a similar fate against Urbana, as two errors in the sixth gave the Frederick County school five runs.

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