News Photo
Senior Goalkeper Damian Marciniak
Men's Soccer - Mon, Oct. 31, 2011
(Bensenville, Illinois) The Saints traveled to Illinois on Saturday for their final game of the season to face the CCAC-leading Robert Morris Eagles.
     

The Eagles, receiving votes in the national polls, entered the contest on top of the CCAC touting an overall record of (13-3), and a CCAC mark of (8-1). The Saints entered the contest with an overall mark of (4-11-1). The Saints could do Saint Xavier a favor by beating RMC, allowing a two-way tie atop the CCAC standings between the Eagles and Cougars at 8-2.

These credentials apparently went unnoticed by Rhett Zych and the Saints, who kept the high-flying Eagles in check for most of the game, and off the scoreboard for almost the entire first half. Senior goalkeeper Damian Marcinak (Michigan City, Indiana) kept the Saints in the game facing 8 shots in the first period, saving 2 of the 3 attempts on goal. The lone goal in the first half was in the 32nd minute, as Joe Kelley beat Marciniak to give the Eagles a 1-0 on Senior Day.

At the half, head Coach Rhett Zych had good reason to believe the Saints could knock off the Eagles, "We were getting chances, but just not converting on them," he said after the game, "The outcome of the game would be decided by the team that converted the most on the opportunities."

The Saints nearly converted for a goal early in the second half during a scrum on the doorstep of Eagles goalkeeper Zach Szymel. The play was setup when senior Brooks McDonald (Spring Lake, Michigan) fed a ball to junior Khiry Hollowell (Indianapolis, Indiana) whose header nearly beat Szymel before being swiped away on a desperation save.

The Saints kept manufacturing chances in the second period, when minutes later junior Robert Campos' (La Ceiba, Honduras) shot attempt rocketed off the corner post, missing a tie goal by mere inches.

The Eagles survived the pressure by the Saints and returned fire again when they converted on one of their chances on a breakaway goal in the 57th minute. The Eagles went up 2-0, and held off the Saints for the remaining 33 minutes to earn the CCAC regular season title.

The Saints graduate three seniors in Marciniak, McDonald, and Jaime Genis (Elkhart, Indiana). Zych will miss Marciniak's acrobatic saves, as well as the offensive swagger and hustle from Genis. McDonald's consistent two-way play will be hard to replace, especially on the defensive side of the field. The Holy Cross Athletic Department would like to congratulate the seniors and wish them all the best in the future.

The Saints lost the season finale to RMC 2-0, and finished the season 4-11-1.