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Archive for November 15, 2006

Nov. 15, 2006 — A “mini-Maryland”

Jenna Reis has remade the Gaithersburg Quince Orchard (Md.) field hockey team literally in her image.

As Jenna Siegel, she played for the University of Maryland. These days, Quince Orchard wears black and red Under Armour (same brand as the Terrapins) instead of the traditional polo shirts and pleated plaid kilts the Cougars wore in the early 2000s.

Quince Orchard has also adopted the way Maryland gets introduced in the pregame: the player introduced steps in the midst of her teammates, then low-fives them while turning counterclockwise, then sprints out as her name is called. And at the 2006 Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association, the team was assigned the west bench, the one the Terps typically use.

And it seems the Cougars are finally playing a bit like their role models. A golden goal in the 75th minute by sophomore Alissa Peterson got Quince Orchard its first undisputed state championship with a 1-0 win over Edgewater South River (Md.).

The thing is, thanks to Maryland’s unique rule mandating two separate lineups for the two halves of overtime, the Cougars could not use its future Terp — senior holding midfielder Emily Ellenberger — for the second 10 minutes.

Throughout the match, Ellenberger showed remarkable skill, aplomb, and willingness to bring the ball from deep in its formation. Once shifted from central midfield to sweeper in the second term, she — like NCAA Player of the Year Paula Infante of Maryland — was afforded all sorts of room to bring the ball into the attack.

I have a feeling you’re going to hear a lot from Emily Ellenberger at the next level.