The Georgetown Prep soccer team spread out across the length of the field after playing St. Albans at home on Tuesday afternoon in North Bethesda. Then they started to walk in unison, stomping down hundreds of loose artifical grass chunks back into divots, trying to repair a field that had come under the wrath of a sometimes brutal and physical contest in the two hours prior.
“You could have dinner on this carpet,” Georgetown Prep Coach Guy Fraiture said. “We wanted to help our [field manager] a little bit.”
Only after that work was done could the Little Hoyas celebrate.
Playing on a field that withstood heavy rains Monday afternoon, the Little Hoyas (7-1-1, 5-1) absorbed most of the offensive pushes by St. Albans (8-3, 3-3), earning a season sweep over the Bulldogs and setting up a showdown with IAC power and sixth-ranked St. Stephens/St. Agnes on Friday.
“Intensity was high the whole game,” Baena said. “We played as a team more compact when they were attacking. . . we took advantage of it.”
The teams traded goals off headers in the first half, with Liljenquist striking first for the Little Hoyas in the middle of the first half and Bulldogs forward Duncan Symington answering several minutes later.
Robinson opened the second half with a 15-yard shot that whistled across the box and beat the St. Albans goalkeeper inside the right post to push the score to 2-1.
St. Albans, which has lost two straight, pressed for a tying goal in the final 20 minutes.
But each run at the net was a lost opportunity. A kick inside the box sailed above the crossbar with 18 minutes left. A corner kick went begging with eight minutes left, and a direct kick was stonewalled by the Little Hoyas backline with three minutes left.
With the game was all but over, Baena snuck behind the aggressive defense, and was in the right place at the right time when the Bulldogs goalkeeper came out of the box and misplayed a ball. Baena booted the insurance goal into a wide open net.
After his players labored on the cut-up field , Fraiture told Baena and the rest of the team to take the day off Wednesday. None of them, Fraiture said, is even allowed to come to the field. It was a gesture well received.
“Probably going to relax for a while [on Wednesday],” Baena said. “It was a hard game for me.”