Gaels battle relentlessly but second-ranked Eagles hold on for a 3-2 MIAA A victory


McDonogh’s Kieran Baskett made seven big saves to help McDonogh hold off Mount St. Joseph on the road.

by Joe DiBlasi

The defending MIAA A Conference McDonogh Eagles got back on track in Irvington on Friday, earning a hard fought 3-2 win over Mount Saint Joe on a sun-splashed, breezy, late October afternoon.

The Eagles (8-2-1) were coming off a tough stretch, having suffered consecutive one goal losses to No. 1 Loyola and No. 9 Archbishop Curley after zooming out to a 7-0-1 start in league play.

McDonogh scored first when Ian MacDonald slipped one past St. Joe keeper Ashton Carey 10 minutes into the game on a cross from Sean Nolan.

“It was off a corner, and it bounced out and Sean hit it back across,” said MacDonald. “I was there to one time it to the right of the goalie.”

The Gaels (6-8-1), coming off a big 2-0 win at No. 10 Calvert Hall, tied it, 1-1, with 13 minutes to go in the first half when Brett Callahan tallied on a feed from Casey McCanna.

The Eagles came out on fire to start the second half, getting two quick scores in the first three minutes. Andrew Privett put his team up 2-1 at the 39:28 mark, and Richie Nichols made it 3-1 one minute later.

Privett credited his goal to sophomore Kyle Brown.

“Kyle showed great composure at the top of the box, holding onto the ball and shifting the defense,” said the senior leader. “He hit a beautiful back heel to me, and I hit it near post, past the keeper.”

Nichols gave the Eagles some breathing room when he drilled home McDonogh’s third goal with a thrust from the 18, witht 38:26 left.

“Sean (Nolan) played the ball to Luke (Davis),
who served it, and Mason (Christian) left it for me,” said Nichols. “It was a fantastic play by them, and I was wide open at the 18 and practically had an open goal.”

In its typical, feisty fashion, the Mount did not quit. The Gaels got within one goal, with 16:44 to go in regulation, when Luke Isayiw found the net on a feed from Alex Crabbs.

The Eagle defense, led by senior keeper Kieran Baskett, made the one goal lead stand up.

“St Joe is a very physical team; they’re young and they go very hard, and we had to watch out especially for their set pieces today,” said Baskett. “We came out flying in the second half and that is what got us the win.”

St. Joe captain Casey McCanna said, “We
were hoping to get revenge after losing to them [on September 25], and going into the half we felt pretty good, but they got two goals early in the second half. Down two, we kept fighting and we made it a close one.”

Eagle Coach Brandon Quaranta praised
St. Joe.

“Coach Mike (St.Martin) does a great job with that team. They’re young, but they’re talented, and they work really hard,” said Quaranta. “Most teams quit when they’re down 3-1 but they pulled themselves back and we needed to make some plays to stay ahead and we were able to do that today.”

The Eagles will take on undefeated Loyola at Blakefield on Monday, while the Gaels will try to rebound at Archbishop Spalding on Tuesday.

Pictured above: (From left) Ian MacDonald, Andrew Privett and Richie Nichols (all scored for McDonogh.

NO. 2 MCDONOGH 3, MOUNT ST. JOSEPH 2
MCD 1 2 — 3
MSJ 1 1 — 2
GOALS: MCD-Anderson, Privett, Nichols: MSJ-Callahan. Isayiw.
ASSISTS: MCD-Nolan, Brown, Christian; MSJ-McCanna, Crabbs.
SAVES: MCD-Baskett 7; MSJ-Carey 5.