All-Metro field hockey 2023: Crofton’s Kylie Corcoran named Player of the Year

All-Metro field hockey 2023: Crofton’s Kylie Corcoran named Player of the Year

Here are The Baltimore Sun’s All-Metro field hockey teams for the 2023 season.

Player of the Year

Kylie Corcoran, Crofton, senior, midfielder

Corcoran was the catalyst of top-ranked Crofton’s prolific offense, time and again dribbling the ball up field, beating defenders and either setting up or scoring goals for the Class 4A state champions. Her final totals of 21 goals and nine assists don’t begin to convey her role in the offense.

“She’s involved in so many scoring plays,” Cardinals coach Amy Skrickus said. “She might not be the one scoring, but she in some way, shape or form helps to get that ball down the field to set up that play. … She has phenomenal stick skills and her field hockey IQ is very high. So she might dodge around and beat multiple defenders, but while she’s doing that she’s also scanning the field and knowing which pass to make and when to make it.”

That’s not to say the Fairfield University-bound midfielder didn’t strike fear into the hearts of opposing goalies. She notched goals in 16 of her team’s 18 games, including six game-winners.

Corcoran has grown with the young program, starting at Crofton in its first year when the school only competed at the JV level. Even then, Skrickus said she could plainly see her freshman “was going to be something special.”

Last year, Corcoran helped lead the Cardinals to their first Class 3A state title, earning first-team All-Metro honors along the way. This year, with the task even more difficult after a move up to 4A, she was perhaps even better, scoring the go-ahead goal in her team’s 2-0 win over defending champion Broadneck in the state semifinals, avenging a pair of earlier one-goal losses to their Anne Arundel County rival.

The win was monumental for the Cardinals, who prepared and played as if they had something to prove.

“We went in just making sure we were having fun out there and playing our hardest,” Corcoran said. “It was a huge, huge win, and we were so excited after. Working 110% at practice and team bonding really helped so much. … We wouldn’t win games or play as hard as we do if it wasn’t for my teammates. They help me so much on the field. They make me a better player.”

Mt. Hebron vs Northern 3A field hockey final

Mt. Hebron coach Jeannette Ireland watches as her players raise the championship trophy following their win over Northern Calvert during the Class 3A state field hockey championship at Paint Branch High School on Saturday, November 11, 2023.

Brian Krista/Baltimore Sun Media

Mt. Hebron coach Jeannette Ireland watches as her players raise the championship trophy after their win over Northern Calvert in the Class 3A state championship game Nov. 11. (Brian Krista/Staff)

Co-Coaches of the Year

Jeannette Ireland, Mt. Hebron

Ireland has racked up 343 wins during her 33 years coaching Mt. Hebron, but perhaps none more thrilling than the Vikings’ 5-1 victory over Northern-Calvert last month.

While the game itself was a blowout, the win gave Mt. Hebron its first Class 3A state championship. Since Ireland took over in 1990, the program had won six Howard County titles and eight regional championships but had never won a state crown in five previous tries, despite coming agonizingly close.

“I’m still riding high. I’m just so thrilled for our program and thrilled for our alumni,” Ireland said. “I knew we had a lot of talent, but you just don’t know in the beginning of the season how well they’ll come together. And they just really did. They came together on and off the field. They really jelled as a team.”

A former standout athlete at Towson and later Goucher College, Ireland began her coaching career as an assistant lacrosse coach at Johns Hopkins, where she remained for several years while simultaneously coaching field hockey at Mt. Hebron. This season, the 2009 inductee into the Greater Baltimore Lacrosse Foundation Hall of Fame knew she had something special.

“It was exciting to watch,” she said. “For example, at the beginning of the season we introduced some corner plays. You run them in games and you don’t score and you don’t score. Then, about two-thirds through the season, all of sudden our corner plays really started to executive at a high level.”

Ireland said the enormity of finally winning a state title hit her when she noticed how many of her former players showed up to the final at Paint Branch High School in Burtonsville.

“The alums poured a lot into this,” she said. “To see so many of them come was just overwhelming.”

2023 field hockey, Glenelg at Garrison Forest

Garrison Forest Grizzlies head coach Mimi Smith reacts during a game against Glenelg.

Karl Merton Ferron/Baltimore Sun

Behind coach and former NCAA champion Mimi Smith, Garrison Forest won the IAAM A Conference title. (Karl Merton Ferron/Staff)

Mimi Smith, Garrison Forest

Garrison Forest’s fortunes seemed bleak early this season after consecutive one-sided losses to Archbishop Spalding and Notre Dame Prep. Smith, the Grizzlies’ second-year coach, managed to turn that experience into a positive, setting the stage for her team’s dominant run to the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland A Conference championship.

“I had been working on the same things, saying the same things, and it just wasn’t clicking,” Smith said. “I think losing those two games in the way that we did, the girls were like, ‘We don’t like this. We were embarrassed. We need to lock in and switch gears a little bit.’ It really just shined a light on all the things that I was saying we needed to work on, individually and as a team. After that, they bought into the plan.”

Did they ever.

Garrison Forest outscored opponents 35-4 the rest of the way and, despite losing top defender Morgan Qualls to a knee injury late in the season, regrouped to post a 3-1 win over then-No. 1 Spalding in the IAAM A Conference title game.

Winning is nothing new to Smith, who in 1998 led Old Dominion to the NCAA Division I championship and won the Honda Award as the nation’s top player, becoming just the second Black woman to do so. She’s still active in the sport, and after taking some time off this year plans to rejoin her U.S. Women’s Masters team and her club team in 2024.

No matter what happens going forward, however, Smith said this season has created a memory that will be hard to beat.

“The end result was very satisfying,” Smith said. “It was a difficult start, but I told my players it doesn’t matter how we start; it just matters how we finish, and we get to choose what we want that to look like.”

Dec. 7, 2023: Glenelg High School field hockey student athlete AJ Eyre. (Brian Krista/staff photo)
Glenelg senior AJ Eyre finished the season with 29 goals and 20 assists to lead her team to its third straight Class 2A state title. (Brian Krista/Staff)

First team

AJ Eyre, Glenelg, senior, forward-midfielder

The Maryland commit finished the season with 29 goals and 20 assists to lead her team to its third straight Class 2A state title. Standout stick skills, speed and shooting ability, including a wicked reverse shot, made her a huge threat on attack.

Skylar Gilman, Archbishop Spalding, junior, forward

The Maryland commit finished with 14 goals and seven assists, using her speed, field awareness and stick skills to shred opposing defenses. Five of the third-team All-American’s goals were game-winners.

Raleigh Kerst, Broadneck, junior, forward

Kerst had a breakout season after missing nearly all of 2022 with an injury. The Ohio State commit finished with a school-record 21 goals to go along with nine assists, time and again weaving into tight spaces and getting her shot off.

Natalie Machiran, Mt. Hebron, senior, midfielder

A member of the 2023-24 U.S. U-21 Women’s National Team who is committed to Michigan, Machiran finished with 30 goals and 10 assists to lead Mt. Hebron to a 16-2 record and its first Class 3A state title.

Broadneck vs River Hill field hockey

Broadneck's Faith Everett sprints up the field with the ball as River Hill's Sophie Chudnovsky defends on the play during a field hockey game at River Hill High School on Wednesday, September 13, 2023.

Brian Krista/Baltimore Sun Media

Broadneck’s Faith Everett, right, finished with 16 goals and nine assists while moving seamlessly between forward and midfield. (Brian Krista/Staff)

Faith Everett, Broadneck, junior, midfielder-forward

A versatile player with great speed, quick hands and a high field hockey IQ, the Maryland commit finished with 16 goals and nine assists while moving seamlessly between forward and midfield. She’s hard to shut down and always finds a way to get her shot off.

Brinkley Eyre, Glenelg, junior, midfielder

The Maryland commit had 17 goals and 15 assists to help lead the Gladiators to their third straight Class 2A state title. She stepped up on the biggest stages, contributing to 11 of her team’s 18 goals in the playoffs.

Penelope Kousouris, Bryn Mawr, junior, midfielder

This Wake Forest commit is a dynamic player — quick, strong and highly skilled — with a gift for controlling the midfield. She finished this season with five goals and six assists to lead the Mawrtians to 10 wins and a No. 6 area ranking.

Sophie McAvoy, Garrison Forest, senior, midfielder

The senior’s quick hands, standout speed and tremendous field presence made her an offensive force for the IAAM A Conference champions. The Lafayette commit finished with nine goals and six assists, shooting from almost anywhere with a variety of shots.

Mady Quigley, Broadneck, senior, midfielder

The Bruins’ three-year starter and Susquehanna commit finished with eight goals and nine assists but did some of her best work on defense, shutting down opponents’ momentum by creating turnovers and making a pair of defensive saves.

Jilly Lawn, Archbishop Spalding, junior, defender

A major factor in the Cavaliers’ nine shutouts, the Miami (Ohio) commit led the team with seven defensive saves. The center-back showed tremendous poise organizing her defense and made a habit of cleanly and quickly stepping up to the ball.

Morgan Qualls, Garrison Forest, senior, defender

The four-year varsity standout was a team leader for the IAAM A Conference champions, bringing a commanding presence to a defense that allowed just four goals in the final month of the season. After recovering from a season-ending knee injury, Qualls will continue her career at Indiana.

Crofton vs Broadneck field hockey championship

Crofton goalkeeper Ryleigh Osborne defends the goal against Broadneck's Faith Everett during field hockey in the Anne Arundel County Championships at Annapolis High School Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023. Broadneck won 3-2.

John Gillis/for Capital Gazette

Crofton goalkeeper Ryleigh Osborne defends the goal against Broadneck’s Faith Everett during the Anne Arundel County championship game. (John Gillis/For Baltimore Sun Media)

Ryleigh Osborne, Crofton, junior, goalie

The junior’s standout agility and quick reactions helped her stop 92 of 99 shots for a .929 save percentage. The Maryland commit recorded 12 shutouts, including a 2-0 win over defending Class 4A champion Broadneck in the state semifinals, in becoming a second-team All-American.

Second team

Winslow DiPeso, C. Milton Wright, senior, forward

Sarah Mudd, St. Paul’s, senior, forward

Izzy Vickery, Garrison Forest, junior, forward

Sophie Baer, Manchester Valley, junior, midfielder

Helen Baldy, Centennial, senior, midfielder

Alayna Enoff, South Carroll, sophomore, midfielder

Tara Radebaugh, Maryvale, senior, midfielder

Anna Lindner, Mt. Hebron, junior, midfield-defender

Stella Bumgarner, Archbishop Spalding, junior, defender

Maddie Fuller, Hereford, senior, defender

Bree Riggs, Crofton, junior, defender

Sarah Walker, Glenelg, junior, defender

Kerigan Ross, Notre Dame Prep, senior, goalie

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