Boys Soccer: Slomba steps in, helps Reavis shut out Argo
By Tim O’Brien For Sun-Times Media September 24, 2012 8:56PM
Updated: October 26, 2012 6:11AM
Like any backup, Reavis goalkeeper Rafal Slomba is just looking for a chance to prove himself.
Playing his first significant varsity minutes and getting his first career start, Slomba made the most of his opportunity Monday.
Staked to an early lead on a goal by Kamil Szczesniak, Slomba recorded a shutout in Reavis’ 1-0 win over rival Argo at Toyota Park in Bridgeview.
“I found out I was starting about five minutes before the game,” Slomba said. “I said, ‘Thanks, coach, for the chance, and I won’t let you down.’ ”
Slomba made six saves to hold Argo (9-5-1) scoreless in the nonconference game, which was played apart from the South Suburban schedule.
Reavis (12-4-1) won the Silver Striker Trophy, the award presented to the winner of the rivalry game.
“Argo is a great team, and you always want to play your best soccer against them,” Szczesniak said. “You know if you fall asleep for one second, they’re going to counter on you and score.”
The senior forward’s goal came less than six minutes into the game. Fielding a pass from Luis Martinez from midfield, Szczesniak dribbled up the left side and drilled a shot at the net with his left foot from 20 yards out. The shot lined past a diving Jesus Ortiz (6 saves) at the far post.
Working with the lead, Slomba made saves on three free kicks by Ortiz.
“Those shots were flying at me,” Slomba said with a smile. “I tried to get my hands up, get behind the ball, and I was able to catch them. My defense was great in front of me.”
Argo had one last shot with less than two minutes to go, but Reavis defender Wojtek Tyniec deflected a Luis Lezama shot. Slomba then corralled the corner kick to preserve the lead.
“We moved the ball better in the second half, but we didn’t play well,” Argo coach John Gaytan said. “I think we had 16 shots, and we didn’t finish. That’s the bottom line.”