By Tom Peace
TopLaxRecruits.com, Posted 3/25/14
Culver, No 2 in the Warrior/TopLaxRecruits North America Rankings, improved to 5-0. No. 8 Gilman fell to 2-1.
Culver led most of the way in heavy snow, but the Greyhounds never made it easy and tied the game, 10-10, on late goals by Tyler Ruhl (off a Peter Brown feed) and William McBride (from Andy Matthews).
McKenzie had three goals while Riley Thompson and Ethan Walker both led with three goals and two assists and Joel Tinney had two goals and an assist.
“We talked before the game about bending but not breaking and that’s exactly what we did late in the game,” said Culver coach Jon Posner. “I was very proud of our poise.
“We’re used to weather like that; we’re from the Midwest! The boys showed incredible focus to not let the weather affect our play.”
Andrew Gemma had two goals and an assist while Chase Wittich, Ruhl and McBride each had two goals and Brown added a goal and an assist for Gilman. Matthews dished three assists.
The Hounds took a 1-0 lead before Culver scored the next three. The Eagles led, 7-4, at halftime when things really got interesting as Gilman’s Ben Shmerler kept it close with strong play in goal.
Brown made it 7-5, but Culver went up 8-5 before Gilman drew within 8-7. Culver then took leads of 9-7 and 10-8 before the Hounds rallied to make it a 10-10 game.
Culver goalie Mikey Calvello also was a key, making several key saves down the stretch.
“No doubt, Mikey made some huge saves, especially down the stretch,” said Posner. “He also did incredibly well anchoring our clearing game.”
Gilman coach Brooks Matthews said his team would not use the poor conditions as an excuse. Simple skills like picking up a groundball were difficult, but the field presented the ultimate test for both teams.
“The game conditions are the same for both teams,” Matthews said. “It was kind of a neat environment to play in a snowstorm.
“We just didn’t make enough plays. We had our opportunities to make plays all over the field and we didn’t make enough of them.”
Matthews was, nonetheless, happy with his team’s comeback.
“I am proud of the guys,” he said. “I know our guys are going to come back because they have a lot of heart.”
Culver’s win was a major accomplishment fro a Midwest program that is quickly establishing itself as a national power.
Next up for Culver on this Maryland tour is is Mound St. Joseph Wednesday and No. 3 McDonogh on Thursday. What does this experience playing the MIAA teams mean to the team?
“It’s vital for us in proving ourselves as a national power,” Posner said. “The MIAA is the best league in the country and our boys are thrilled to face off against such top tier competition.
“A win against such a storied program like Gilman is likely the biggest in our program’s history.”
Kudda.com Game of the Week Video, Interviews
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Culver Academy 11, Gilman School 10
Culver Academy 3-4-2-2- 11
Gilman School 1-3-3-3- 10
Culver Academy – Riley Thompson 3g, 2a, Ethan Walker 3g, 2a, Dawson McKenzie 3g, Joel Tinney 2g, 1a
Gilman School – Andrew Gemma 2g, 1a, Tyler Ruhl 2g, William McBride 2g, Chase Wittich 2g, Peter Brown 1g, 1a, Andy Matthews 0/3