Early loss wakes up Century field hockey team

September 21, 2005|By Katherine Dunn and Rich Scherr

Century's field hockey team came into this season with a No. 11 preseason ranking and high hopes to make a run at Carroll County, Monocacy Valley Athletic League Chesapeake Division and state Class 2A titles.

Though those hopes took a dive when the Knights lost their first game, 2-1, to Winters Mill, they have quickly returned, with the team winning its next five games, including a 1-0 upset of then-No. 7 Archbishop Spalding.

"We're just playing our game right now," said coach Gayle Taylor, whose No. 6 Knights were 5-1 going into yesterday's South Carroll game.

"Don't ask me what happened with that first game. It was one of those things that needed to happen, and I'm glad it happened early. It woke them up."

Taylor also made a change on the field that has helped the Knights on the defensive end. Instead of using five forwards in a 5-3-2 formation, the Knights now use four and a sweeper in a 4-3-2-1 formation.

"That's working, so we're staying with it," said Taylor, who also plans to stay with her neon green and pink flip-flops. "If we make it to states and it's snowing, I'm wearing those flip-flops."

Everything worked at the Spalding tournament, where the Knights first nipped then-No. 15 Broadneck, 4-3, on Jess Makowski's overtime goal. Lindsey Gurkovich scored against Spalding, the highest-ranked team the Knights have ever beaten and the first private school team they have beaten.

Gurkovich leads the Knights in scoring with six goals and two assists, and stellar midfielder Alicia Thompson has three of each.

The Knights, with nine returning starters, also have gotten strong efforts from Makowski and Kristen Resutek on defense, Kaitlyn Langley on the line and Shannon Watt, a transfer from North Carroll, in the midfield as well as time-sharing goalies Hope Ellis and Stephanie Kershaw.

Out for season?

North Carroll senior and defending Class 3A state champion Amy Watson said she likely will miss the remainder of the cross country season because of mononucleosis.

Watson confirmed via e-mail that the mononucleosis has caused her liver and spleen to enlarge and that her doctor has told her that if she were to run, her spleen could rupture.

"I have also been out of school for a while now and my doctor predicts that I could be out into the month of October," Watson wrote. "I hope to cut that short, however! I also hope to get back into running as soon as possible, but that will have to be handled cautiously."

In other cross country news, the Liberty boys team captured the small schools division at the Bull Run Invitational on Saturday with 79 points.

Tougher schedule

The Westminster football team has rolled to easy victories in its first two games against South Carroll and Winters Mill, but things are about to become more difficult for the Owls.

After beating the Cavaliers and Falcons, who were both 3-7 last year, by a combined 71 points, Westminster will face Francis Scott Key, Urbana and Linganore, who were a combined 25-8 last season, in the next three weeks.

The Owls lost all three matchups a year ago. One thing working in their favor is that all three games will be played at home.

Sun staff writer Edward Lee also contributed to this article.

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