Girls lacrosse: The poll

March 17, 2010

1. McDonogh

Coach: Chris Robinson Last season: 19-1, ranked No. 1

Postseason: IAAM A Conference champion

Outlook: The Eagles graduated a good bit of firepower, but they return a powerful dose of midfield and defense. As usual, they are fast and athletic. With veteran leadership and more depth than most opponents, the Eagles should make a strong bid to repeat as champions in the area's toughest league.

2. Notre Dame Prep

Coaches: Mary Bartel, Lisa Costello Last season: 17-2, No. 2

Postseason: IAAM A Conference runner-up

Outlook: The Blazers suffered both their losses to the Eagles last season, including the A Conference title game, so they will be motivated to avenge them. Despite losing their two high-scoring leaders, the Blazers have the strength to reload with veterans in key spots and 14 returning players.

3. Severna Park

Coach: Carin Peterson Last season: 16-3, No. 4

Postseason: Class 4A-3A state champion

Outlook: The Falcons were injury-riddled early last season, and that contributed to three midseason losses, but they rallied to win their third straight state title. With eight starters back and everybody healthy, the Falcons are the team to beat in Anne Arundel County.

4. Broadneck

Coach Karen Tengwall Last season: 14-2, No. 6

Postseason: Class 4A-3A East region semifinalist

Outlook: The Bruins return perhaps the area's strongest corps of attack players among their nine starters back. The biggest loss to graduation was in goal, but there are two promising replacements. Look for the Bruins to give Severna Park a strong run in Anne Arundel County.

5. Winters Mill

Coach: Courtney Vaughn Last season: 13-5, unranked

Postseason: Class 3A-2A state semifinalist

Outlook: The Falcons drop to Class 2A-1A this spring and rank among the favorites to take the state title. With 10 starters back looking to atone for last season's 13-11 state-semifinal loss to eventual champ Fallston, look for a potent attack and a solid all-around game.

6. Liberty

Coach: Kristin Crutchfield Last season: 13-2, No. 13

Postseason: Class 2A-1A West region finalist

Outlook: The Lions are still stinging from a last-second regional final loss to Century and are eager to jump into a crowded Carroll County race that ended in a three-way tie among the Lions, Century and Westminster. Only three starters graduated, and a veteran goalie returns.

7. Bryn Mawr

Coaches: Wendy Kridel, Kim Simons Last season: 13-6, No. 9

Postseason: IAAM A Conference semifinalist

Outlook: Graduating seven starters, the Mawrtians will be young on the offensive end, but they look strong defensively with some veteran returning players and a pair of solid goalies. Look for more speed and more balanced scoring to keep them in the A Conference mix.

8. Mount Hebron

Coach: Brooke Kuhl-McClelland Last season: 16-4, No. 7

Postseason: Class 3A-2A state runner-up

Outlook: The Vikings lost a lot of offense and some key defenders with the nine seniors they graduated, but they always reload and there are some eager youngsters ready to step in to make a run at the program's 16th state title. It doesn't hurt to return a veteran goalie.

9. Annapolis

Coach: Dave Gehrdes Last season: 14-3-1, No. 8

Post season: Class 3A-2A state semifinalist

Outlook: The Panthers have rebuilding to do on defense, and that will be key after graduating All-Metro goalie Brittany Pastrana. However, they return their entire midfield and a strong offense as they move to Class 4A-3A, joining the rest of the who's who in Anne Arundel.

10. Westminster

Coach: Jackie Stevens Last season: 16-2, No. 15

Postseason: Class 4A-3A state runner-up

Outlook: The Owls return seven starters from a team that battled Severna Park before falling, 7-5, in the state final. A cohesive unit with strength throughout, the Owls bring back a veteran goalie as well as a significant portion of an offense that scored 332 goals last spring.

11. South River

Coach: Kim McNemar Last season: 15-3, No. 12

Postseason: Class 4A-3A East region finalist

Outlook: The Seahawks should be in the hunt in the area's toughest region along with Severna Park, Broadneck and Annapolis. They return six players, including Anne Arundel County Player of the Year Brooke Griffin, but they need to break in a new keeper.

12. Fallston

Coach: Mike McTeague Last season: 17-2, No. 5

Postseason: Class 3A-2A state champion

Outlook: Coming off a stunning 16-1 win over Mount Hebron in last year's state final, the Cougars have some big shoes to fill on attack, but they return their line defense intact. Consistency in the goal will be key, but this veteran team knows how to win the big games.

13. John Carroll

Coach: Krystin Porcella Last season: 13-5, No. 3

Postseason: IAAM A Conference semifinalist

Outlook: The young Patriots will look to seven freshmen to contribute and help keep them in the hunt in the highly competitive A Conference. Strong leadership in the senior and junior classes, on and off the field, should bring them along quickly.

14. St. Mary's

Coach: Megan Lewis Last season: 10-5, No. 9

Postseason: IAAM A Conference quarterfinalist

Outlook: Only four starters return for the Saints, but one of them, Lyndsey Munoz, ranks among the A Conference's best goalies. Still, the Saints have a lot of experienced players ready to take their places in a starting lineup that should feature a balanced attack.

15. Garrison Forest

Coach: Jess Onheiser Last season: 7-9, unranked

Postseason: IAAM A Conference first round

Outlook: A surprise no longer, Garrison scored a few upsets last season and pushed McDonogh to 14-12 in the A Conference tournament opener in their first year up from the B Conference. The Grizzlies have experience, a fluid transition game and a veteran goalkeeper.

Others considered: Century (15-1, No. 10), Hereford (11-3, unranked), Marriotts Ridge (11-2, unranked), Maryvale (10-6, No. 14), St. Paul's (12-7, unranked), Severn (6-12, unranked), Towson (11-4, unranked)

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