McDonogh's sweeper, sophomore Alex Yi, has an innocent-looking smile, but pay-backs are sweet, even for a nice kid like him.
And the 6-foot-2, 160-pounder got it yesterday as the No. 2-ranked Eagles (11-2, 6-2) rebounded from Monday's loss to No. 1 Calvert Hall. By 2-0, they shut out No. 5 Archbishop Curley, a Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Conference rival.
The win offset an earlier 1-0 loss to the Friars (8-2, 5-2-1), whose goal in that game came on a penalty kick by Brandon Scarfield with 45 seconds left.
Yi's foul set up that penalty kick.
"I made some early mistakes, but my fullbacks helped me out and [keeper Cam Thompson] came up big," said Yi, an Olympic Development Program regional-team player, of their Eagles' eighth shutout. "We came in for revenge, not so much for what I did, but just to show we've improved."
All-Metro midfielder Jon Cole, the area's top scorer with 10 goals and eight assists, scored the game's first goal from about 15 yards out off a cross from Vinnie Ciarpella eight minutes into the second half.
"I chested it down, turned and just volleyed it into the far corner with my right foot," said Cole, whose shot got beyond the out-stretched hands of diving keeper Jason Muffoletto (seven saves).
"Jason's one of the league's best goalies, so I knew I couldn't just touch it. I think he still got a hand on it."
Muffoletto got a hand on the next goal, a burner by Cap Poklemba off a cross from Bobby Cherneski, with 2: 30 left to play, but it simply carried too much momentum.
"I one-timed it with my left foot, kept it low," said Poklemba, the team's third-leading scorer with six goals and five assists behind Cherneski (eight, five). "We started out flatly, but our half-time talk pumped us up."
The Friars had a 9-6 advantage in first-half shots, with Steve Novak and Brandon Quaranta missing three times and twice respectively. But Curley's best chances came while the Friars were down a goal.
Scarfield's left-footed blast drifted inches wide of the near post, and Steve Althoff's carried wide of the far post.
Althoff also sent a dangerous ball toward Thompson (eight saves) from 30 yards, but Thompson tipped it up with both hands, and, as it got behind him, turned and grabbed it before it crossed the goal-mouth.
But Thompson didn't work alone. He had support from Yi, Cherneski, Ciarpella and Chris Zuk, the last of whom headed a rocket away from the near post.
McDonogh had a couple of chances late in the first half, but Curley's Marco Angelini booted away a shot at an unprotected goal, and Muffoletto snuffed another by Hiroki Kawasi.
"Spalding's still our best game. This was better, but we can improve," said first-year McDonogh coach Steve Nichols, referring to a 3-1 victory over No. 6 Spalding -- the only team to top Calvert Hall.
"They're [Eagles] well-coached. They were better today," said Muffoletto. "They out-played us and deserved to win."
Pub Date: 10/09/97