Josh Hat­maker

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - VARSITY -

Play­ing a daunt­ing sched­ule to pre­pare for a state cham­pi­onship run, the Glenelg boys lacrosse team lost six straight games af­ter a 3-0 start. Over and over in the midst of the dif­fi­cult stretch, coach Josh Hat­maker told his play­ers: “The lit­tle things are go­ing to turn into big things.”

Hat­maker and his staff im­ple­mented some new tac­tics, but mostly returned to the ba­sics to re­fine those lit­tle things. The play­ers bought in, worked hard and the big­gest of the big things came May 21, when the No. 10 Gla­di­a­tors (13-6) claimed an 11-7 win over Cen­tury for the Class 2A cham­pi­onship.

The win avenged the last of the team’s six losses. Along the way, the Gla­di­a­tors also beat de­fend­ing state and Howard County cham­pion Mar­riotts Ridge, 7-6, in over­time, in the South Re­gion play­offs.

Jack Sawyer

Four-year var­sity player, cap­tain scored 39 goals and added 28 as­sists in help­ing the Car­di­nals to a third straight MIAA A crown

Showed a knack of step­ping up in big­gest mo­ments; reg­is­tered three or more points in 14 games with one-goal, five-as­sist per­for­mance in ti­tle game

Mary­land com­mit started ca­reer at mid­field and fin­ished with 81 goals and 52 as­sists

Said Bryan Kelly: “He’s got great hands — can go right or left equally well. He’s an out­stand­ing dodger and he al­ways plays within him­self. What I love most is he’s a com­peti­tor, so if we’re strug­gling, he tends to dig down deep and makes some­thing hap­pen.”

Will Tomi­novich

Came into the season with one ca­reer var­sity start and emerged as the area’s top new­comer on de­fense

Leaned on agility, tenac­ity and smart po­si­tion­ing to con­sis­tently win one-on-one chal­lenges; an­chored a de­fense that yielded under eight goals per game in go­ing 8-2 in MIAA A play

Col­lected 52 ground balls, had 18 caused turnovers and con­trib­uted four as­sists

Said St. Mary’s coach Vic­tor Lilly: “He takes the top at­tack­man out of the game. It’s his foot­work and he’s an exquisitel­y smart lacrosse player with the an­gles he takes on the field to cover ground.”

“Even though they were drop­ping games, their con­fi­dence never went away,” said Hat­maker, who com­pleted his 15th season. “They were up­set with them­selves, they were up­set with the re­sults, but they knew they still had a lot of tal­ent and were pretty re­silient. I think some­times you get in a sit­u­a­tion like that and kids fold and every­thing snow­balls and you have a re­ally dis­ap­point­ing season. These kids didn’t do that.”

The state ti­tle was the pro­gram’s fourth under Hat­maker and first since 2011. His ca­reer record is 212-58, hav­ing also led the Gla­di­a­tors to 11 re­gion ti­tles and seven Howard County crowns.

Hat­maker cred­ited his as­sis­tant coaches — Joe Der­went, Chris Rosas, Jeff Doughty and Jeff Shear — for their hard work and ded­i­ca­tion.

Ma­son Wood­ward

Three-year var­sity player, cap­tain brought ver­sa­tile de­fen­sive skills and lead­er­ship to No. 7 Cru­saders (10-6)

Game-changer to­taled 78 ground balls, 33 caused turnovers, two goals and six as­sists this season

Mar­quette com­mit played close de­fense, long-stick mid­field and as a wing on face­offs, typ­i­cally cover­ing the op­po­nent’s best player

Said St. Paul’s coach Trey Whitty: “Ma­son has the abil­ity to com­pletely change a game.”

[email protected]­ twit­­nGra­hamSun Ed­i­tor’s note: Be­cause of the se­lec­tion of Co-Play­ers of the Year, The Sun chose 10 first-team play­ers in­stead of 11.

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