The Fenwick and OPRF soccer teams are having similar seasons, but it’s not all positive. Both teams had six victories going into this week, but that’s not the most interesting similarity between the rivals. Both teams have been plagued with injuries.

The Friars have endured several walking wounded, forcing head coach Robert Watson to enlist a number of inexperienced players to step up and take on more responsibilities.

When it comes to the team up the street from Fenwick? Name an ailment, any ailment, and chances are the OPRF soccer team has suffered it. The M*A*S*H* unit roster currently includes Brandon Bujnowski (deep back bruise), John McGillen (13 stitches in head), Sam Fodor (separated kneecap), Sam Euler (deep abdominal bruise) and Kevin Kearns, who is expected back soon after suffering a severe ankle injury during tryouts.

Despite the setbacks, both clubs have been able to persevere through the bulk of the schedule. For their effort, the teams are likely to emerge from tonight’s sectional seeding meeting with relatively favorable slots. The Friars (6-4-1), who defeated the Huskies two weeks ago, seem to be in better position than their rivals. Fenwick is 3-1-1 against teams that fall into their sectional, and Watson believes a five or six seed is likely. OPRF head coach Paul Wright said he was hoping for a six or seven seed, but couldn’t be sure with a slew of new teams in the sectional.

“We have lost five games by a goal and have been in every game,” he said of his Huskies, who fell 2-1 to Maine South on Saturday. “We have a real strong schedule compared to most programs. Looking solely at head to head records against common opponents and putting emotions and feelings behind us, we should fall six or seven.”

Wright went on to add, “We have a lot of kids playing out of position and stepping up. For the past two weeks it has felt like a shuffling of roles and responsibilities.”

Watson can relate. He’s had two starters out with injuries, but a deep bench has helped ease the blow. Right now, Watson said, he doesn’t have his team focused on the postseason.

“At this point in the season, we are looking to become more consistent. We are in the heart of the Chicago Catholic League schedule and focused on the task at hand-winning a CCL title,” he said.

The Friars, who currently hold a 1-1 league record, must defeat Brother Rice, Providence and Loyola in order to win the championship. They’ll travel to Providence on Thursday and host Loyola on Tuesday at the Dominican Priory in River Forest. Both games begin at 4:30 p.m.

The Huskies host Riverside Brookfield on Friday at 4:30 p.m.

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Brad Spencer

Brad Spencer has been covering sports in and around Oak Park for more than a decade, which means the young athletes he once covered in high school are now out of college and at home living with their parents...