In a matchup of two well-known traditional St. Louis soccer powers that felt a little strange to see any earlier than in a district final, CBC bested De Smet 2-0 in a first round/semifinal match Tuesday at W. Michael Ross Stadium in Town and Country.
It was physical on the pitch early and often as the two Metro Catholic Conference rivals went at it with the most on the line since De Smet's (12-9-4) win in the district championship in 2011 propelled the Spartans to a state title.
But Tuesday, CBC (19-5-1) Sophomore Devon Boyce and Senior Forward LJ Adewumni found themselves in the thick of the Cadets' chances, and they capitalized. Boyce found the back of the net with just under 10 minutes gone in the first half. Adewumni had a chance sail just over the crossbar later in the half before knocking in a rebound off a Boyce blast that hit the crossbar, giving the Cadets a 2-0 lead they would not relinquish.
"I expected a little bit more out of our players today and we just didn't perform," De Smet Head Coach Greg Vitello said. "All the credit goes to Terry (Michler) and his team, they played a great game. They deserved to win it."
De Smet would have opportunities and kept the ball in the CBC zone for much of the second half, but could not get on the board. CBC advances to face Marquette Thursday at 7 p.m. at CBC. It will be a game with even more on the line, even after beating a rival program at a lower stage of the playoffs.
"In my 42 years this is the first time I've had a first round game of this magnitude," Michler said.