Because of delays in the season, there will be no Mid-Atlantic Conference boys' soccer champion this season. With the beginning of the winter sports season arriving and the glut of games to be rescheduled, the conference decided to forgo the postseason tournament, though teams are still allowed to make up regular season games through Sunday.
"We decided that because teams had too many games to play in a week, there was no physical way to finish all of the games," said Kathy Hudson, the MAC soccer commissioner and Georgetown Day's athletic director.
"The kids were really disappointed, because we were playing really well at that point in the season," said Georgetown Day Coach Harold Newton, whose team had won the past two MAC titles. "We were hoping to play one more game, and it looks like we may play three."
Two MAC schools, Potomac School and Flint Hill, also are scheduled to play in the Virginia Independent Schools Soccer Association tournament, which begins Friday. Potomac is the fifth seed in the Division I bracket, and will host Fredericksburg Christian. Flint Hill, the 10th seed, will travel to Eastern Mennonite.
The Delaney Athletic Conference will not hold a boys' soccer tournament either, as five member schools are scheduled to play in the VISSA tournament as well. In the Division II bracket, Highland is the top seed and will host Grace Christian. Highland will get the opportunity to avenge its first-round loss in last year's VISSA tournament, but will not get the chance to defend its 2001 DAC championship.
"That's definitely disappointing for everyone and frustrating," junior Jon Blackwell said. "It was a goal we had."
In girls' soccer, the Independent School League canceled its postseason tournament. The team with the best regular season record earns the ISL championship title.
"The cup is a nice thing, but the [championship] banner is what we're shooting for," National Cathedral Coach Richie Burke said. "That's the league title."
By eliminating the tournament, the ISL was able to reschedule missed conference games and guarantee each team a full schedule. No. 7 National Cathedral (9-1) is undefeated in league play and has lost only one other game, to Paul VI Catholic in early September.
Agorsor Leads Arundel
Arundel senior James Agorsor missed the first five games of the season for academic reasons, and four more during the season for unspecified reasons, but he was the most valuable player on the field for the Wildcats on Monday night. Agorsor made two penalty kicks -- one to tie the score at 3 with five minutes remaining and the game-winner in overtime -- to give Arundel a 4-3 victory over Glen Burnie in the first round of the Maryland 4A East Region tournament.
"It was a good game, it could've gone either way," Arundel Coach Nick Jauschnegg said. "The defense has to be so worried about [Agorsor's] speed and his ability to score."
Arundel will host No. 1 seed Thomas Johnson at 6 tonight, and will need a similar effort from Agorsor, and juniors Justin Thompson and Dave McGowan, who each also scored on Monday, to get past the undefeated Patriots.
Haggerty, Estrian Spark Sherwood
The Sherwood girls' team roared to two big wins in its first games since the sniper shootings, in large part because of the play of junior Katie Haggerty and freshman Lauren Estrian. The Warriors' duo combined for eight goals over two games, a 6-0 win over Paint Branch and a 3-0 win over Springbrook in Monday's 4A West Region first-round game.
Estrian had a goal and an assist in Monday's win and has shown that she could be one of the top young players in Montgomery County.
"She's a coach's dream," Coach Frank Weaver said. "She has great talent, and she's a great worker. If I told her to run through a wall, she'll go through the wall until she's tired and then get back up and try again."
Sherwood (3-4-1) could be a tough draw in the playoffs. In Friday's regional quarterfinal, the Warriors will play Watkins Mill, which beat Sherwood, 4-3, in overtime early this season.
Note: Boys' and girls' rankings will return next week.