Oct. 20, 2004
Washington, D.C. - American University scored two goals in the final 20 minutes of regulation on Wednesday afternoon at Reeves Field to snap Loyola's six-game unbeaten streak. The Greyhounds fall to 7-5-1 on the year and complete their non-conference schedule with a 2-nil loss.
"American is a very good side," says Loyola Head Coach Mark Mettrick. "I think our young guys learned a lot from today's match and hopefully that will help us down the road."
A scoreless first half was not without opportunities for both sides. Solid play from sophomore goalie Justin Chelland stymied an early American attack. Chelland's first of five first-half saves came in the second minute when he turned over a Charlie Koniver bullet.
The Greyhounds also had their share of first-half opportunities and sophomore Omar Alfonso ignited the attack with his charging shot in the 13th minute. American goalkeeper Chris Sedlak came up with the save, but Loyola would keep the ball in the offense half of the field.
A low cross from Alfonso in the 22nd minute found freshman Camilo Correa with an open look from the edge of the 18. Correa went far post, catching Sedlak out of position, but Koniver made a kick save to keep the game scoreless. Alfonso gave the `Hounds several more chances, dribbling through the American defense and finding junior Vinnie Piscopo in both the 28th and 30th minutes.
After each of Piscopo's shots were turned away, the Eagles went on the offensive themselves. Chelland, who closed out the half with a pair of beautiful saves, started the second half in similar fashion.
The game's scoreless status was immediately threatened with an American direct kick from the top of the box. Chelland made a diving save, his sixth of the game and Loyola turned the momentum its way.
Sophomore Rade Kokovic, who was pulled down from 20 yards out in the 58th minute, took a direct kick that sailed wide. The Greyhounds, unable to cash in on their opportunities, caught a break when Shawn Kuykendall's penalty kick in the 67th minute bounced off the far post.
The Greyhounds would not be so lucky at 71:23 when Salvatore Calccavale curved in the game's first goal from outside the 18. David Marut doubled the Eagles' lead at 77:53 and Loyola, with no points to show for its strong effort, suddenly found itself trailing 2-0.
American's veteran backfield kept the `Hounds off the board and earned its seventh shutout of the year. Chelland finished the game with 11 saves for Loyola, one shy of his career high.
"We fought hard all the way to the end," says Chelland. "You always hate to lose, but now you we have to regroup and focus on the MAAC."
All four of Loyola' four remaining games are against MAAC opponents. The Greyhounds are 5-0 in conference play this season and return to action on October 29 at Niagara.