Calvert Hall, Curley emerge with 0-0 tie

Freshman Whittman saves 15 for No. 9 Cardinals

Boys soccer

High Schools

October 07, 2003|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Two early losses and a tie created doubts that Calvert Hall's soccer team could defend its Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A Division title.

But the No. 9 Cardinals erased those doubts yesterday before a large crowd at Paul Angelo Russo Stadium in Towson, when they battled a rejuvenated No. 2 Archbishop Curley (10-0-2, 5-0-2) squad to a scoreless tie after 100 minutes of highly skilled and entertaining soccer.

"We made a statement today that we're coming on," said Cardinals coach Andy Moore.

Both sides were able to show off their considerable skills on Calvert Hall's new, 70-yard-wide artificial turf field. It was the second soccer game played there.

Both sides created good scoring opportunities, but the defenses and goalkeepers played brilliantly time after time.

Calvert Hall freshman goalkeeper Kyle Whittman proved he's already one of the area's best with a 15-save performance in which his decision-making was nearly flawless. His most sensational save was in the 56th minute when he came out with perfect timing to block a shot by Matt Beale.

Curley's Shawn Houseknecht, who scored critical goals in Curley's overtime win against McDonogh and tie with Loyola, nearly beat Whittman. Defender Josh Taylor served Houseknecht a ball from midfield that forced Whittman to come out, and Houseknecht chipped a soft shot over Whittman's head that bounced off the crossbar in the 67th minute.

"That was the scariest moment of the game for me," said Whittman. "I was sure it was in. Something kept it up."

Whittman said he feared Curley striker Joseph Toto the most.

"He's very quick and turns well and isn't afraid to pull the trigger," said Whittman.

But Toto was held in check by Calvert Hall's flat four defense that featured central defenders Kevin Rosenberger and Ime Umoh and outside defenders Jake Underwood and Luke Chenowith.

"You have to keep your composure against very talented players like this," Rosenberger said. "You are never satisfied with a tie. We were going for a win."

Calvert Hall (5-2-2 overall, 4-2-2 league) out-shot Curley 21-15, but most of that was in the two 10-minute overtimes when the Cardinals had a 7-2 shot advantage.

Curley goalkeeper Stephen King made a diving save with 4:30 to play, one of 13 saves. He was especially effective against Calvert Hall's four dangerous long throws, two corner kicks and six direct kicks.

He was helped by his defenders John Gaeta and Taylor, who combined kicked three balls off the line, including one with a minute left in the second overtime on a header by Patrick Healey.

Curley took five direct kicks and four corners.

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