McDonogh edges Gilman, 3-2
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.
McDonogh’s Luke Davis, left, celebrates with teammates Aidan Welsh and Andrew Privett after scoring the winning goal in overtime.