Fordham Prep sees itself as starting over from the team that won the CHSAA Intersectional boys’ soccer title and fell in the Catholic state final last year.
“For me it feels like they are all new,” Fordham Prep coach Peter McNamara said. “I don’t have those running jokes or familiarity we have had over the years. It is all kind of fresh and new.”
Despite the fresh faces and new roles the Rams expect to be right in the mix for another crown thanks to the small, but talented veteran core they return. That group did exactly what it is suppose to do in a 4-0 win over Monsignor Farrell last Friday night at Murphy Field.
Junior midfielder Luke McNamara, no relation, scored twice and senior star Alex Canicatti added a goal. Senior keeper Will Marment made a key save early in the second half with the game still very much in the balance.
“We have a lot of young players and this year our seniors have really stepped up with leadership,” Luke McNamara said. “It’s really been showing and I think that helps our younger people.”
The win was the Rams’ first of the season after opening the year with a 1-1 draw at home against rival Iona Prep on Sept. 9 Fordham, who was the city’s best offensive team a year ago, struggled to create scoring chances against the Gaels before eventually finding its groove against Farrell.
“We bounced back really, really well,” Canicatti said. “We have to keep doing what we are doing this game and I think we will have a good season.”
The Rams had similar struggles after it got an early goal on a header from McNamara in the 9th minute, but this time it was Farrell keeper Matt DeMaso holding them back. He made numerous diving saves to keep the score 1-0 at halftime. The Lions nearly got even right after the break, but Marment made a diving stop to his right of his own to keep his team ahead.
It was Canicatti who finally gave Fordham a little cushion. He volleyed in a cross in the box by Shane Queenan to extend the lead to 2-0 in the 63rd minute. Freshman Alex Kirchgaesser tallied the third goal of a great pass from Alex Kirchgaesser before Luke McNamara capped the scoring.
“We expect a lot out of our young plays,” Canicatti said. “I think they performed well today. I think we all performed well today.”
Seniors Godfroy Vincent, Emmet Fucigna and Sean MacGowen are all new to the starting lineup after playing on the team last year. Felix Kowarick leads and strong defense along with first-times Scott Sullivan. Sophomore Sam Davidson has impressed at midfield.
Fordham Prep knows it is better than what it is showing right now because of the roster turnover. It also didn’t scrimmage prior to playing Iona and aren’t quite in game shape yet. The players are still getting use to their rolls and the coaching staff is still looking for its true starting 11. More than 20 kids saw the field against Farrell.
“I think they can all play a lot better than they know it too,” Coach McNamara said. “So just more games, more games, more games.”