DeMatha vs Gonzaga: A Win Enjoyed By Current and Former DeMatha Players
The 2018 DeMatha Men’s Varsity Soccer Season represents a unique moment for the program. Andrew Quinn, the leader of the program, has assembled a coaching staff of alumni and former players. A former DeMatha player himself, Andrew believed that with the help of his former teammates, he could continue to lead the program in a winning direction. Assistant coaches and former DeMatha soccer players Drew Yates, Brendan Gregoire, Ben Fleri, and Parnell Hegngi were all in attendance on Thursday, September 27 to witness the meeting of two of the top programs in the WCAC as DeMatha played against Gonzaga at the Academy of Holy Cross. Gonzaga has given DeMatha trouble in the past few meetings and was victorious after an overtime win in the WCAC Championship last season. The winner of this game can consider themselves favorites to be WCAC Champions this season so the stage was set for this critical match. As the game begun, standing on the sideline was Andrew Quinn and five assistant coaches that represented all three high school teams and all five coaches had also competed against Gonzaga as players for the DeMatha program. Not even the heavy rainfall could damper the emphatic 3-1 victory DeMatha’s Varsity Soccer team achieved over long time rivals Gonzaga. FirstTouch caught up with head coach Andrew Quinn and the man of the match, Chris McKinney to get their thoughts on the game and the season so far. McKinney, in particular, highlighted how impressed he was with the overall team effort on showing and praised the mentality of the group in such a pivotal game. The Junior Striker scored two goals as he led DeMatha to victory. The first goal came about after Sophmore midfielder Diego Gomez intercepted a Gonzaga pass and found a clever run made by Chris McKinney into space. McKinney took the pass in stride and slotted it past the oncoming Gonzaga goalkeeper. It was a well-deserved goal after a strong start by DeMatha. McKinney’s performance highlights the growing confidence in this DeMatha squad.
This Gonzaga victory represents four wins in a row for Andrew Quinn’s side as they look to keep the momentum going. Coach Quinn spoke of how he was pleased with the effort of his team and the focus maintained throughout the preparation and execution of the game plan. Having previously scouted Gonzaga, Coach Quinn felt confident his team could exploit the weaknesses in Gonzaga’s defense and now feels his team have the confidence from such a big win to continue on throughout the season. DeMatha coming into the season without last season’s conference player of the year, Justin Gielen, who is now playing at the University of Maryland, Coach Quinn spoke about how pleased he has been with players stepping up to fill the void left by such a decisive player, and he hopes his team can continue to trust each other and build on this standout performance. Responding to the importance of this win, Coach Quinn said, “We have had a difficult out of conference schedule this season, so getting a result against a good Gonzaga team should solidify the belief amongst the boys in their ability to play at the level they are capable with.”