I was playing around with a scripted test that also uses a JDBC test step and noticed a few things:
When i pass an invalid SQL statement and run the test on the commandline with the maven plugin, the above exception ends up in the logging output and isn't catched by the testRunner, as it is with other test steps. That is also true for other java.sql.SQLExceptions.
If I run this test in SoapUI, it still passes, so it seems the SQL error is not handled as a test step failure.
Same on the commandline, where the surrounding maven build finishes as succesful.