McDonogh edges Gil­man, 3-2

Baltimore Sun - - VARSITY - By Glenn Gra­ham glenn.gra­ham@balt­sun.com twit­ter.com/Glen­nGra­hamSun

McDonogh boys soc­cer coach Bran­don Quar­anta saw a good sign from his team dur­ing the crit­i­cal mo­ments of its Mary­land In­ter­scholas­tic Ath­letic As­so­ci­a­tion A Con­fer­ence quar­ter­fi­nal against vis­it­ing Gil­man on Mon­day.

When the Ea­gles could have got­ten down, they in­stead met the chal­lenge.

Af­ter see­ing their two-goal lead van­ish late in the sec­ond half, the de­fend­ing league cham­pi­ons were able to re­fo­cus and get a vic­tory in over­time. Sopho­more Luke Davis scored with 3:37 left in the first 10-minute over­time pe­riod to send No. 5 McDonogh through to the semi­fi­nals with a 3-2 win over the No. 8 Grey­hounds in Owings Mills.

McDonogh (15-6) will visit No. 1 and top-seeded Arch­bishop Cur­ley on Thurs­day, while the se­nior-laden Grey­hounds ended their sea­son with a 9-7-4 mark.

Af­ter the Ea­gles took a 1-0 lead into half­time on a goal from An­drew Priv­ett, the sec­ond half fea­tured sev­eral of fouls and three penalty kicks. The Ea­gles were awarded the first, and Casey Set­tle­man con­verted with 34:55 to play. The Grey­hounds stayed per­sis­tent and earned two penalty kicks, Teddy Ndje scor­ing on both. The sec­ond tied the game with 9:43 left in reg­u­la­tion.

“Ob­vi­ously, when we went up 2-0, a team with less char­ac­ter prob­a­bly would have quit and lost the game. But they did what they’ve done all sea­son, Gil­man goalie John Philip­pou, left, knocks the ball away from McDonogh’s Luke Davis (10). bat­tled and got two back on us,” Quar­anta said. .”

The Ea­gles pressed to close out the game in reg­u­la­tion, but two saves from Gil­man goalie John Philip­pou (eight saves) helped force the ex­tra time.

Davis was in the right place at the right time, redi­rect­ing a shot from Ai­dan Welsh close to goal, to send the Ea­gles on to the next round.

“I [have] never ac­tu­ally scored the game-win­ner for high school. It’s great hav­ing the fans here, all my friends and fam­ily, to see it, and it’s a great feel­ing go­ing on to the semi­fi­nals,” said Davis, who has four goals and six as­sists this sea­son.

Gil­man coach Jon Seal said this year’s team, stock­piled with 16 se­niors, was one of the most en­joy­able to work with in his 25 years of coach­ing.

“All great kids and a self­less group. It was demon­strated here to­day when we were down 2-0. Most teams would have packed it in and said, ‘Oh, well,’ but we found a way to get op­por­tu­ni­ties to score and buried two,” he said. “This is play­off soc­cer, and this is what we­come out on Au­gust 10 and sac­ri­fice three weeks of our sum­mer [for]: to play in games like this. Some­one had to lose, and un­for­tu­nately, it was us, but credit McDonogh. They made the play when they needed to.”

NO. 3 CALVERT HALL 2, LOY­OLA BLAKEFIELD 0: In Mon­day’s other semi­fi­nal, the third-seeded Car­di­nals got sec­ond-half goals from se­niors Brady O’Con­nor and Ben Alexan­der to ad­vance to Thurs­day’s semi­fi­nal at No. 2 Mount Saint Joseph.

Calvert Hall im­proved to 14-4-2 this sea­son, while the Dons closed out the year with a 6-11 mark.

Frus­trated by a stingy Dons de­fense through­out the first half and well into the sec­ond, the Car­di­nals broke through on a free kick by O’Con­nor from 25 yards with un­der 20 min­utes to play.

Alexan­der se­cured the win with his 22nd goal af­ter Ben Ben­der got deep into Loy­ola’s penalty area and sent a pass across to him.

KEN­NETH K. LAM/BAL­TI­MORE SUN PHO­TOS

McDonogh’s Luke Davis, left, cel­e­brates with team­mates Ai­dan Welsh and An­drew Priv­ett af­ter scor­ing the win­ning goal in over­time.

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