Chaminade defender James Harris couldn't help but refer to the outcome of the game yesterday as a loss.
"It was just a difficult loss. Well, a difficult tie, I mean," Harris said after a CHSAA game at home against St. John the Baptist, which ended with the score tied 1-1. "But it's pretty much just like a loss because we really wanted at least three points."
St. John the Baptist (3-1-1) didn't earn a win, yet a tie against the defending CHSAA champions on the road left players encouraged.
"It's not the result we wanted but it's almost just as good," said SJB junior Chris Abruzzo. "We've always been the underdogs and today it was good to show that Chaminade and St. Anthony's aren't the only teams that are capable in this league."
Abruzzo tied the score with 17 minutes left in the first half when he scored a goal on a blast from about 40 yards away from the net.
James Brady scored on a header from close range for Chaminade (3-0-2) just two minutes into the game. Brady believed it would be the start of something more.
"It's definitely a loss for me," Brady said. "I thought we had the game and we would pile on with three or four more but it didn't work out that way."
After what coach Michael Gallagher called a "sloppy" first half, Chaminade displayed continuity with crisper passes in the second. Yet late in the game, SJB goalkeeper Nicholas Malderella made a handful of pretty saves, preventing scores on several close shot attempts inside the final five minutes. He finished with a dozen saves.
Chaminade goalkeeper Andrew Dorritie also made a bevy of nice saves. He recorded eight.
Both teams had multiple chances to take the lead. Kieran Hall and Matthew Scorce had a few good looks late in the game for SJB, and so did Ethan Ellsworth and Brian Cruse, playing in only his second game because of an injury, for Chaminade.
As the game ended, some Chaminade players covered their faces with their jerseys as some SJB players quietly clapped to themselves.
Said Abruzzo, "It's definitely a statement for us."