STOVER — A captivating season for Smithton soccer ended in the district championship match.

Father Tolton scored two goals in the second half of a 2-1 standing Thursday in the Class 1, District 4 Tournament final at Roy Poynter Field.

Tigers freshman Braedon Cairer thwarted a shutout result with 6 seconds remaining in regulation.

Smithton head coach Sean Hutchinson said he was proud of the team’s wire-to-wire effort.

“I think it speaks volumes of the team that down 2-0 in the final seconds, we didn’t give up,” Hutchinson. ”We gave it our all, and still got a goal.”

The Tigers (15-8-1) never lost two matches in a row, captured the Kaysinger Conference Tournament, played for a district title for the first time in 14 years and finished two matches short of its first state semifinals bid since 1986.

“It’s been a pretty good year,” Hutchinson said.

After out-shooting and generating more corner kicks than the Tigers in a scoreless first half, the Trailblazers (9-10) dominated midfield en route to a series of corners and a goal 2 minutes after halftime.

In the 55th minute, Smithton senior Leyton Shireman deflected a hot strike on a slide, but Tolton cleaned up the deflection to increase its lead to 2-0.

“He’s made some fantastic saves tonight and all season,” Hutchinson said of Shireman. “He just had a couple unlucky ones go in. … He’s been a great leader and a great player.”

Exclusively rostering returners from last season and a talented freshman, the Tigers will replace five seniors next year. Hutchinson, who coached the group since they were freshmen, said the class of 2020 left a lasting impression.

“All the seniors this year have put forth a lot of effort,” Hutchinson said. “As freshmen, I knew they were going to do something great. ... They left a great legacy for the future of Smithton soccer to uphold and beat sometime down the road.”

The Trailblazers (9-10) are scheduled to play the winner of the District 3 championship between Collegiate School of Med-Bio Science and Lutheran North.

Alex Agueros can be reached at sports@sedaliademocat.com or on Twitter @abagueros2.

 

Sports Editor

Alex Agueros is the sports editor for the Sedalia Democrat, covering games and sports features in Sedalia and Pettis County and surrounding areas. He can be reached at 660-530-0142 or on Twitter @abagueros2.

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