Notes from the Coach: Saints soccer cruises through District Tourney, advances to State
Thursday, Nov. 7 — Class 1 District 7 Semifinal — Clover Dell Park (Sedalia)
Saint Paul Lutheran 4
Cole Camp 0
Schmidt: “The Saints had the bye as the one-seed and played four-seed Cole Camp HS on Thursday. Winners of the 4-5 match 9-2 and with a record of 10-7-1, they are a solid and disciplined team. It was very cold, so the ball played pretty hard and was a little more difficult to control or play long.
Saints got a quick start with junior Vebjoen Nedreboe heading in a corner in the third minute. Junior Haakon Arnesen finished a cross from junior Sander Bekkesletten in the 22nd minute to double the lead, and then added a third goal for the Saints in the 30th minute of the first half, again linking up with Bekkesletten.
Arnesen got his hat trick in the eighth minute of the second half, this time finishing a long pass from senior Trey Beerman. From there on we kind of rested our starters and rode out the lead in preparation for the Class 1 District 7 Championship match Saturday.
Sophomore Elijah Rankin went the distance in goal to secure the shutout.”
Saturday, Nov. 9 — Class 1 District 7 Championship — Clover Dell Park (Sedalia)
Saint Paul Lutheran 1
Sacred Heart 0
Schmidt: “Two-seed Sacred Heart HS (16-8) is a solid, veteran team, ranked third in Class 1 coming into the tournament.
We had nicer temperatures on Saturday, but also windy conditions. We wanted to get going early, which we accomplished by getting five shots and four corners early on. We were able to convert a corner kick from senior Trey Beerman with the go ahead goal off sophomore Phillip McCaslin’s header in the game’s eighth minute. That goal would hold up, although the action was continuous throughout the match.
We missed a couple of opportunities, including one shot off the post in the second half, but we played good defense in limiting SHHS’s opportunities to a few wishful shots.
Shots favored the Saints 25-11 and corners favored us also, 7-3.
Sophomore Elijah Rankin had five saves in earning the clean sheet.
Saints (20-0-1) will host Barstow HS (14-7-1, Class 1 District 8 champions) on Saturday, Nov. 16 at 1 p.m.”
Reporter’s notes: After edging out Barstow HS in each of the three Missouri Soccer Coaches Association’s (MSCA) 2019 Boys State Soccer Polls for the top-ranked Class 1 team, the Saints will get a long-anticipated rematch to their Oct. 10 1-1 tie in a weather-shortened Kansas City Showcase matchup. It is the only “blemish” to the Saints undefeated record, although it certainly deserves an asterisk.
The Saints route to their program’s third state championship is certainly a front-heavy one, as they had to knock off the state’s third-ranked program, Sacred Heart HS, in the district championship. It was their third match with SHHS this season, with the first ending 5-0 in the Clinton Tournament on Sept. 11 and the second finishing with a narrow Saints victory, 1-0 on Oct. 17 — just days after the Gremlins received their first of two third-place MSCA Boys Soccer Polls finishes.
Should the Saints advance past Barstow in the Class 1 State Quarterfinals on Saturday, Nov. 16, they will face the winner of fourth-ranked Greenwood HS (15-4, Class 1 District 6 champions) and unranked Laquey HS (15-11, Class 1 District 5 champions).