Massapequa's Brian Nichtern, left, looks to stay ahead of Chaminade's...

Massapequa's Brian Nichtern, left, looks to stay ahead of Chaminade's Alexander Stallone during the first half of a non-league soccer game at St. Paul's Field. (Oct. 7, 2013) Credit: James Escher

After Massapequa scored the first goal midway through the second half, Chaminade's Andrew Dorritie, who never stops shouting instruction and support, loudly barked, "This game's not over.''

The goalkeeper was right.

Less than five minutes later, Chaminade's Mike Randazzo connected for a goal right near the crease off an assist from Carney Mahon to knot it up. And Monday's marquee matchup between the defending CHSAA boys soccer champion and perhaps the best public school team in Nassau ended 1-1.

Even a heavy rain during the first half, which left the field muddied, didn't prevent the game from being completed.

"It was just a nightmare during that first half,'' Chaminade coach Michael Gallagher said. "We contemplated calling the game, but it began to clear up at the half, and it was really a game that we wanted to get in.''

With the rain pouring down, accurate passes were a rarity, the field was very sloppy and neither team scored in the first half. Tim McGovern, Alex Stallone and Greg Buckley tackled well for Chaminade (7-1-4), and Massapequa's Brendon Merklin, Brendan Galivan and John Romano won several balls in the air.

Massapequa, on the strength of its defense and goalkeeper Dan Vitiello, had allowed only one goal heading into the game. With a mix of lethal scorers and savvy defenders, the Chiefs have rolled to a 7-1-1 overall record.

So when Brendan Raab scored from close range off a pretty pass from Galivan, things looked bleak for Chaminade. Yet Dorritie said, "It didn't faze us.

"I knew that my communication would help get them motivated right after we fell behind,'' added Dorritie, who had three saves.

When Randazzo's goal tied it, Dorritie, as usual, let out a congratulatory roar from the other side of the field.

"It's tough because they played hard and they got their intensity up after we scored,'' Galivan said. "It's definitely a bit more tough because we did have a lot of shots despite the poor conditions.''

Galivan and Merklin had a few opportunities for Massapequa on free kicks in the second half, yet a second goal eluded the Chiefs.

"It's definitely been a good season, but I wouldn't call it great,'' Galivan said. "Great is when we are in the playoffs and hopefully get good results against teams like this.''


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