0504 mid buch LeBlond soccer

Bishop LeBlond sophomore Emma Raines and Mid-Buchanan freshman Liv Moeckli fight for possession Tuesday at Mid-Buchanan High School.

FAUCETT, Mo. — Two of the top teams in the state went toe-to-toe Tuesday night as Bishop LeBlond defeated Mid-Buchanan 2-0 at Mid-Buchanan High Dchool.

Both LeBlond (8-5) and Mid-Buch (10-6) entered the week ranked in the top 10 in the state for Class 1, with LeBlond coming in at No. 6 and Mid-Buch at No. 10.

The first half was highlighted by the constant pressure the Eagles put on the Dragon defense. The game was played mostly in Mid-Buch’s half, with LeBlond putting shot after shot on goal. While the Eagles kept pressure, the Dragon defense bent but didn’t break in the early going.

“We had a little trouble finishing,” LeBlond head coach Chad Thompson said, “but we maintained possession for the better part of the game, and I think that was probably the key.”

The Eagles finally saw a breakthrough 25 minutes into the game when senior Olivia Elliott was able to put one past the keeper and open the scoring for the game.

Just a few minutes later, Elliott doubled her goal total and doubled the Eagles’ advantage, as she dribbled past the keeper and fired a shot into the side netting just inside the far post.

Elliott credited the constant pressure she and her teammates put on the Dragons to helping her find the back of the net.

“It gives us a lot of momentum, knowing that we have so many opportunities,” Elliott said. “It really is just a matter of time before we put one in the back of the net, and as long as we keep doing it, they’re gonna fall.”

The match was not just a heavyweight bout between two of the best in the state, but a potential preview of a matchup that could happen in the postseason, as LeBlond and Mid-Buch are likely the top two seeds in Class 1 District 8.

Elliott said that while it does put a little pressure on them, seeing and beating Mid-Buch once already will bode well for the Eagles if the two face off again in the postseason.

“I think it gives us a good sense of hope,” Elliott said, “considering that we have beaten them and we know what they’re like and we know what we need to do to beat them.”

LeBlond is back in action Thursday as the Eagles face Excelsior Springs, while Mid-Buch is off until next week’s game against Guadalupe Centers Charter in their final regular season contest.

The Class 1 District 8 tournament begins May 17.

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Jacob Lang can be reached at jacob.lang@newspressnow.com. Follow him on twitter: @NPNowLang.

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