Sharp goalkeeping reigns in River Hill-DeMatha tie

Storm ends 0-0 game during first overtime

Boys soccer

September 25, 2001|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

The quality of the soccer played yesterday at River Hill, where the undefeated No. 3-ranked Hawks tangled with undefeated DeMatha of Washington, approached the highest level usually seen only during playoff time.

The game ended 0-0 when a storm, accompanied by thunder and lightning, moved through Howard County during the first overtime.

"No one was holding back," River Hill coach Bill Stara said. "People were stepping in and taking one for the club. And you had two goalkeepers who shined."

Those keepers, Dave Marquart of River Hill and Mark Murphy of DeMatha, although not called upon to make many spectacular saves, each consistently handled some difficult situations well.

And even though DeMatha outshot River Hill 18-10, Murphy ended up with more saves - eight to Marquart's five - because DeMatha struggled to put its shots on goal.

DeMatha's inability to finish was the only hole in an otherwise highly skilled, quick and exciting team, one dominated by its defense, which has allowed just one goal in eight games. And that one came on a penalty kick.

River Hill (3-0 overall, 1-0 league) has not allowed a goal in three games.

"Even though they outshot us, I thought the quality chances were about even," Stara said.

The Stags (7-0-1) nearly had a penalty kick on a trip in the 34th minute, but the Hawks escaped that threat when the trip was ruled to be outside the box.

A few minutes later, Murphy made a good save on a throw-in that was headed by Justin Hughes.

Murphy made another strong save in the 57th minute after Jason Finney fought through a defender and crossed the ball in front of the goal, where Matt Boras and Spencer Hannas were unable to kick it in from close range.

Boras had River Hill's best scoring chance in the 62nd minute off a cross from Hannas, but the volley went high.

Hawks defender Brian Walter drew a second yellow card in the 69th minute, forcing him to leave the game permanently, but the Hawks were allowed to substitute for him because the double yellow was deemed a soft red. DeMatha drew three yellow cards from that point as frustration mounted.

"This is the level we want our boys to play," DeMatha coach Leigh Manson said. "It was a good physical game, not dirty, and skill was shown on both sides. Unfortunately, defense prevailed."

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