Catholic University gave up a goal to Delaware's Rick Potts nine seconds into the game and wound up losing to the defending champion Blue Hens, 1-0, yesterday in the finals of the Maryland Invitational Tournament yesterday in College Park.

In the consolation game, Maryland got late goals from freshmen Bob Dass and Dave Pasquito to defeat James Madison, 2-0.

Potts collected a loose ball at midfield and dribbled straight down the middle of the field before beatiing goalkeeper Joe Cerullo with a shot from 20 feet. The ball deflected off Cerullo's hand and twisted into the left corner of the net.

"We are a very young team, and we made a freshman mistake," said Cardinal Coach Tripp Kline. "It was a case of everybody trying to find their man, but nobody marked Potts. But I'm pleased. To hold a Division I school to just one goal isn't bad."

Yesterday's loss ended one of the best weekends for Catholic soccer since the school dropped to Division III from Division I two years ago. The Cardinals upset regional power James Madison, 1-0, in the opening round and played Delaware evenly after giving up the early goal.

Catholic's strong showing against Delaware is more impressive considering the team played most of the game without leading scorer Tommy Khoo, who suffered a knee injury.

"We have no pressure on us because nobody expects us to win anything," said Cerullo, who made nine saves against Delaware and finished with 25 for the tournament.

Delaware held a 21-9 advantage in shots and carried play in the first half, forcing Cerullo to make six outstanding saves. At one point, Cerullo stopped two consecutive point-blank shots, the second save coming while he was on the ground.

"He (Cerullo) made the difference," said Delaware Coach Loren Kline. "Without him they are ordinary."

Catholic had several scoring opportunities in the second half, the best coming with 20 minutes remaining when junior Ted Emerson's shot from 20 feet went over the crossbar.

UDC 2, Glassboro St. 0: Paul Emordi scored one goal and assisted on the other for the Firebirds, who won at home.