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Slick keeps Leopards on move at North

April 28, 2011|By BOB PARASILITI | bobp@herald-mail.com

HAGERSTOWN — Luke Slick runs like a dragster and works like an earthmover.

The Smithsburg senior midfielder covers a lot of ground on a lacrosse field when he isn’t trying to move mountains while working for faceoffs.

Slick moved the earth for Leopards on Thursday, controlling more than his share of faceoffs, rushing the ball into the offensive end and — if it wasn’t enough — scoring the pivotal goal in Smithsburg’s 9-5 MVAL Antietam victory over North Hagerstown at Mike Callas Stadium.

“Luke works harder than anyone else on a consistant basis,” said Smithsburg coach Joe Dietrich. “He is all over the place. I wish he could stay out there longer.”

Slick got his breathers throughout the game, but he was on the field in key situations when the Leopards needed him. The biggest stretch may have been in the third quarter when the Leopards shut out the Hubs to push out to a 9-4 lead.

Smithsburg owned a 6-4 lead at the half and quickly expanded it to put it out of reach. Dillan Harbaugh scored his third goal of the game at the 8:26 mark to give the Leopards a three-goal lead.

The two teams got into a lull for the next five minutes until Slick came on and called his own number. He took the ball back 30 yards and measured the Hubs’ defense. Slick ran up the middle and unloaded an overhead bounce from 10 yards for a goal with 3:21 left in the period.

“I called the play,” Slick said. “Coach tells us that if we see that we have a mismatch, we can call the play. I thought I had a mismatch and it’s a play where I take it in and pass or take the shot. So I went for it.”

Cullan Ganley added the final blow 26 seconds later with his fourth goal of the night as the Leopards took the five-goal lead and left the rest up to the defense.

“We got into to halftime and talked about what we could do,” Dietrich said. “The main thing we wanted to do was get the ball and settle on offense. We wanted to work the ball around and find shots instead of just going in and shooting like we did in the fourth quarter.”

The Leopards used heavy checking in the midfield area to keep the Hubs off kilter. North’s Randy Brown scored with 7:54 remaining in the game to get the Hubs within 9-5, but the rest of the game was a physical battle for the ball.

“They are well-coached,” North coach Tony Tallant said. “We have been growing as a program, and we are trying to keep growing in our game sense and endurance. We tried to take away their strength in Ganley, but that left other things open.”

Slick’s faceoff work staked Smithsburg to a quick 3-0 lead as Ganley, Harbaugh and Kevin Grimm each scored in the first 4 minutes, 15 seconds of the game.

North came back as Zach Eppard took control of the faceoffs, which led to his own goal along with scores by Drew Brooks and Caleb Mittel for a 3-3 tie after the first quarter.

The game was tied at 4-4 when Harbaugh and North’s Peter Perini traded goals before Ganley scored twice in the final 2:30 of the half to give the Leopards their advantage.

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