McDonogh edges Calvert Hall, 1-0

Marchiano's 2nd-OT goal makes No. 1 Eagles' day

Boys soccer

High Schools

September 08, 2004|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

Strong-willed is certainly a term that describes top-ranked McDonogh's Mike Marchiano.

So it was no surprise when the Maryland-bound senior center midfielder described his rebound goal that beat third-ranked Calvert Hall with 6:20 left in double overtime, 1-0, yesterday at McDonogh.

"I battled No. 7 [Kevin Rosenberger] and willed it in," Marchiano said of his first goal of the season. "I ran through it and used my left foot and put the ball to the keeper's left as he recovered."

That's the same left foot that he's broken twice and is held together by a screw and a bone graft; the same left foot that kept him from playing soccer from March through Aug. 18, when he finally received a doctor's clearance to play; the same foot that allowed him to play only five games last season.

"Not many guys would be playing like he is," said Eagles coach Steve Nichols of Marchiano. "He kept his fitness up on the bike and the treadmill."

Marchiano said he's really playing at only about 60 to 70 percent of his potential, and he sat out Saturday's DeMatha game to be ready to play yesterday.

"We needed this home win today because Calvert Hall is one of the top teams and it's tough to play over there," said Marchiano. "These games are so highly competitive. We just played a little harder and wanted it a little more today."

Marchiano finished what teammates Matt Beckman and Jon Ports started. Beckman lofted a perfect cross to Ports at the top corner of the 6-yard box and Ports, who played defense most of the game, volleyed a hard, right-footed shot that Calvert Hall goalkeeper Kyle Wittman batted down.

"The goalie cut off the angle," said Ports. "But Mike came through."

Ports had played a central defender position alongside teammate Justin Lichtfuss, and both stymied a hard-charging Calvert Hall attack.

"I pushed Ports up top in overtime trying to go for the win," said Nichols. "Calvert Hall plays harder than anyone. It's not always pretty. [Nino] Mangione [Calvert Hall's sweeper] plays hard and tough and epitomizes their team."

McDonogh has lost the MIAA A Conference championship game two straight seasons to Calvert Hall, and the Eagles want to end that streak this season with seniors such as Marchiano, Beckman, Lichtfuss and goalkeeper Alex Horwath.

"If history proves true, we'll probably see them two more times and every time is a classic," said Cardinals coach Andy Moore.

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