6-9 Green is net asset for TC



Dante Green is a force in Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association B Conference volleyball. The 6-foot-9 Towson Catholic junior's arms, when outstretched, have led to an average of 7.5 kills and as many blocks per game.

Although the inexperienced Owls were winless in seven matches heading into Monday's contest at league rival Annapolis Area Christian, they are improving behind Green's leadership and that of senior setter and team captain Sean Rich.

"Dante is one of our best volleyball players, one of our best passers, and he's good at letting the other players know what's going on," coach Jeff Palumbo said of Green, a third-year player who is serving at 90 percent.

"He's also one of our best basketball players, which makes the game more interesting and has attracted other kids to play. We have several basketball players on the team, four or five of them being sophomores who are playing volleyball for the first time. I think if Dante wasn't playing, it would be hard to get others to."

First-year basketball coach Josh Pratt said Green is among the nation's top recruited junior forwards, having drawn interest from NCAA champion North Carolina, N.C. State, Wake Forest, Kentucky, Syracuse and Maryland among other powers.

"It's very exciting," said Pratt, who expects Green to star in basketball along with McDonogh transfer Malcolm Dulaney, a guard. "Dante's really doing well, academically, with a cumulative 2.9 grade point average. He's a tremendous leader in the school."

World-wise Warriors

Of the 20 players on Woodlawn's boys soccer team, only three hail from the United States. Represented on the roster are Afghanistan, Barbados, the Congo, the Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, Ghana, Jamaica, Jordan, Liberia, Nigeria and Palestine.

"Many of them grew up around soccer the same way American children grow up around baseball or football," said Tim Lauer, the Warriors' highly decorated first-year coach from Arizona. "It's a truly exciting experience to watch them learn to play as a team."

And the world-wise Warriors are winning. Sporting a 5-0 record, the Warriors have returned 10 starters from last year's 2-9 squad, eight of whom are starters this season. The defense has allowed only three goals while scoring 18. The Warriors, of Baltimore County's Division III, have three shutouts with Jamaican senior Paul Davey minding the goal heading into today's game against Overlea.

The scoring leaders are senior Ziad Haddad (six goals, one assist) of Jordan, junior Zemenu Abate (six goals) of Ethiopia and sophomore Kwami Williams (five assists) of Ghana, followed by Berlon Barrios (two, one) of the Dominican Republic and Zenaye Kassaye (two goals) of Ethiopia. Yanne Dende of the Congo and Oyinloye Felix of Nigeria are also capable contributors.

Haddad and Williams are not only excellent players, but quality students. Williams, a 14-year-old, carries a 4.0 average, and Haddad, a 3.8.

Lauer's six-year coaching career is marked by success, having led two high school teams to state runner-up finishes in Arizona.

"He's great with the kids," said Woodlawn athletic director Michael Sye. "I can't believe we've got him."

Whiteley's job change

This spring's dinner table conversations could become a great deal more intense at the household of Mitch Whiteley, who, for the first time, will coach his two daughters in high school lacrosse.

Whiteley will end an 11-year tenure with St. Paul's boys program when he replaces Jim Stromberg as coach of the St. Paul's School for Girls. Former assistant Rick Brocato will take over the boys, something Brocato did for five seasons until 2000 when Whiteley took a sabbatical to spend more time with his family.

"There was a goal to one day have Rick take over the program again, and when this opportunity [to coach the girls] came up, it made the situation beneficial to everybody," said Whiteley, 53.

Whiteley, who coached three MIAA A Conference titlists, had learned from Stromberg that he was stepping down.

"We've been talking about this for two or three months," said Stromberg, a sixth-year athletic director. "His only concern was about his daughters and how they would feel about it."

Whiteley's three daughters, Caity, a senior, Julie, a sophomore, and Hannah, an eighth-grader, attend St. Paul's.

Caity, a midfielder headed for Virginia, and Julie, a goalie, were members of last year's sixth-ranked Gators, who went 16-2 for their second straight Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland regular-season crown.

"Strom did a heck of a job. I know all of the kids. Some I've coached in different ways since they were 5, 6 years old. I'll be meeting with them [this week] just about my philosophy and my expectations," Whiteley said. "It's the girls team, but I have a good relationship with the kids. You want to keep your finger on the pulse. [His daughters] can help me with that, but they're not the only ones who will help me. ... I'm just there to help them be as good as they can be."


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