Edward Little’s Christian Beliveau slides in to disrupt the ball as Lewiston’s Mardoche Kikobo keeps it under control during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night.

LEWISTON — A little bit of perfection went a long way for Lewiston on Tuesday night.

The Blue Devils used a perfect shot and a perfect pass to score their two goals for a 2-0 victory over rival Edward Little in a KVAC Class A North boys’ soccer game at Garcelon Field.

The teams played a chess match of possession for the first seven minutes before Lewiston senior captain Muktar Ali rifled a shot from 30 yards out. The strike found its way past EL goalie Noah Sterling.

“When Muktar hit the shot, he just hit it just right,” Lewiston coach Mike McGraw said, “it had the right dip, it was fast, and it fooled the keeper.”

“I had a really good angle of the ball, I had a really good view of it. The ball was knuckling quite a bit,” EL coach Tim Mains said. “That’s a ball that Noah probably saves 99 times out of 100. Unfortunately the one that he doesn’t save happened tonight.”

The Red Eddies (9-4-1) pressed on to try and get the equalizer, but couldn’t get anything on net. They had five corner kicks in the first half, but the closest they came was an Ahmed Safi kick from the right side that Blue Devils (10-2-2) goalie Dido Lumu punched over the cage.

The game looked to be headed to halftime still 1-0 until the Blue Devils doubled their lead with 59 seconds left. Bilal Hersi sent a cross from the left side over the head of an EL defender to Suab Nur in the right side of the box. Nur corralled the ball, took one touch to his left, then struck a shot into the left side of the goal.

“It was just trying to find a weakness, trying to find an imbalance, and we found it,” McGraw said. “We switched the field. Bilal got the perfect pass to Suab, and Suab was able to finish it.”

“It could have been a killer, it could have put us out of the game,” Mains said. “I don’t think it did that. I think we still played hard and kept it close and made it a game till the end.”

A forced change in goalie early in the second half could have also been a killer for the Red Eddies, but Eli Thibodeau stood tall in net after Sterling went out with an injury. Thibodeau made two saves to keep it a two-goal game.

“Eli hasn’t played goalie since summer soccer, where we didn’t have any goalies there that they and we just kind of threw him in. He did a nice enough job for me to feel comfortable putting him in today,” Mains said. “He hasn’t even practiced it all season long. So to be thrown to the wolves like that, against Lewiston of all teams, for him to go in there and handle the ball the way he did was really unbelievable.”

Lumu only had to make three saves himself, thanks in part to a strong defensive effort in front of him.

“I have to give my assistant coaches (Dan Gish, Abdijabar Hersi and Butch Dow) credit because they made some good calls today. I think one of them was putting Bakar (Shariff-Hassan) back as an extra defender towards the end because Safi is so dangerous,” McGraw said.

The game had no bearing on playoff seeding. Lewiston was locked into the No. 2 seed and Edward Little had already solidified the No. 3 spot. That didn’t have any effect on the intensity, however.

“That’s got playoffs written all over it,” Mains said. “It didn’t really have much implications … on the playoff race. But obviously Lewiston is going to come for us, and we’re going to go for Lewiston, and that’s a perfect game to get ready for playoffs.”

“I have to applaud them for playing such a hard game,” McGraw said. “They’re going to be a tough out.”

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Lewiston’s Warsame Ali leads the charge to ball during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night.Edward Little’s Tyler Morin winds up for a mighty kick during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night.Lewiston’s Alinoor Deqow looks for a teammate to pass the ball to as Edward Little’s Ahmed Safi keeps close during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night. Edward Little’s Barrak Abrdraba approaches to assist.Edward Little’s Tyler Morin and Lewiston’s Suab Nur keep their eyes on the ball during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night.Lewiston’s Suab Nur and Edward Little’s Barrak Abrdraba battle for control of the ball during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night.Edward Little’s Alex Thompson and Tyler Morin charge the ball and Lewiston’s Noralddin Othman tries to get into the play during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night. Lewiston’s Hamza Ali comes in from the left to assist with the play.Lewiston’s Alinoor Deqow holds back Edward Little’s Jamal Issack during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night.Lewiston’s Muktar Ali keeps the ball away from Edward Little’s Tyler Morin during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night.Lewiston’s Alinoor Deqow looks for a teammate to pass to as Edward Little’s Eli Thibedeau approaches from the right during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night.Lewiston’s Suab Nur and Edward Little’s Alex Thompson move the ball down the field during the soccer game at Garcelon Field at Bates College on Tuesday night.


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