ANAHEIM- After a lopsided 14-4 loss on the road to Servite on Mar. 11, Mater Dei came back to Courage Field and got revenge over their bitter Trinity League rival by a score of 6-3 on Thursday. Sean Homsy made 13 saves to hold Servite to 12 goals below their season average.
The Monarchs’ win puts the Trinity League race in turmoil, and gives the coaches a little something extra to think about when they complete the first Coaches Poll of the season this weekend. The Monarchs have extended their win-streak to three games and have surpassed their win total from all of last season. The Friars had their seven-game win-streak snapped.
Mater Dei had an entire week to prepare for Thursdays showdown with Servite, and they came out with an extra chip on their shoulder in the win.
“Boys came out fired up, ready to go,” said Mater Dei head coach Johnny Rodriguez. “We knew this was going to be a fight coming in here. We lost to these guys by 10 goals less than two weeks ago. That didn’t sit well. The quote of the week this week was simply ‘Beat Servite’ and that was our one focus. I think these guys just had a extra chip on their shoulder and fight just a little bit harder than Servite today [Thursday].”
Mater Dei got on the board first thanks to Nick Sando, who scored both of the Monarchs goals to lead 2-1 after the first quarter. Two goals by each team in the second gave Mater Dei a 4-2 lead heading into halftime.
The Monarchs added two more goals in the third quarter and held Servite to only one within the final minutes of the game, resulting in the Friars three-goal loss. Servite head coach Tom O’Leary credited his teams lack of hunger and emotion after the game.
“We always go off the saying that ‘The wolf at the bottom of the hill is a lot hungrier than the wolf at the top,’” O’Leary said. “After beating them last time by 10 goals, I think our guys kind of were sitting at the top of the hill looking down and Mater Dei was hungry. They were hungrier than us and they wanted the game more than us. At the end of the day, effort and emotion are going to drive a team and that’s what Mater Dei came to the table with. Our emotion never made it to the field tonight [Thursday].”
Sando led Mater Dei offensively with four points on the night (2G, 2A). Jack Irvin (1G, 1A), Richard Eusey (1G), Matt Kane (1G) and Zach Johsz (1G) rounded out the scoring for the Monarchs. Game-ball recipient Homsy was a major factor defensively for Mater Dei as he tallied up 13 saves, including five in the fourth quarter.
“I think out of everybody, [Homsy’s] head was hanging lower than everybody else’s after that 14-4 loss,” Rodriguez said. “He bounced back. The next practice, he’s out there before practice getting shots. He’s staying after getting shots. He was more focused today than I ever seen him. One of the best games I’ve ever seen the kid play.”
(Brandon Ross (MaxLaxOC)
Jack Terrones (1G, 1A), Donovan Harper (1G) and Brock McClure (1G) scored Servite’s only three goals in the game. .
“At the end of the day, when you’re top offensive guys don’t come to the table and don’t bring anything to the table, then it’s hard to win,” O’Leary said. “Their goalie made a lot of good saves but our shooting was also poorly done from time to time.”
Mater Dei (1-1, 7-2)will look to make it four in a row in a home conference matchup against JSerra (0-5) on Tuesday at 7 p.m. Servite (1-1, 8-2), on the other hand, will look to get back in the win column Tuesday at 3:15 p.m. when they travel to Corona Del Mar (4-0).