AUBURN — Edward Little coach Max Thompson was happy to hold Lewiston to one goal.

That is, until the final whistle blew in Saturday’s Class A North boys soccer semifinal and that one goal was enough to give the Blue Devils a 1-0 win over the Red Eddies at Central Maine Community College.

The loss brought a halt to the No. 1 Red Eddies’ season, after went 13-0-1 during the regular season and won a quarterfinal matchup against Hampden 5-0 on Wednesday.

“To hold Lewiston to a goal is perfect. I got no problem with that. I don’t anticipate us not scoring,” Thompson said. “But if you had told me that Lewiston would score one goal, I’d say, ‘Good, we’ll win, 2-1, 3-1, sure. No problem.’ But, you know, (Lewiston) played well.”

Lewiston’s Abduljabaar Abdi, right, consoles rival Edward Little player Abdihakim “Dayow” Daud after Saturday’s game at Central Maine Community College in Auburn, where Lewiston defeated Edward Little 1-0 to advance to the Class A North final. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

The No. 4 Blue Devils (11-4-1) were the only team to earn a draw against Edward Little, 1-1 on Sept. 15, also at CMCC. The Red Eddies also beat Lewiston on the road 4-1 to end the regular season. Lewiston then had to survive a quarterfinal game against Camden Hills in the regional quarterfinals that went to penalty kicks.

Now the Blue Devils advance to Tuesday’s regional final at Cony High School, where they will play No. 3 Brunswick (12-3-1). Lewiston beat Brunswick 3-2 in their lone regular-season meeting this year. The Dragons knocked off the Blue Devils in last year’s regional semifinals.


Lewiston hasn’t been shut out all season, but has been held to one goal three times — in both Edward Little matchups and in a season-opening loss to Camden Hills.

The Blue Devils’ lone goal Saturday came fairly early, nearly 15 minutes into the game, but it proved to be a big one.

“We knew we had to score early, and that takes some pressure off us,” Lewiston coach Dan Gish said.

Shafi Ibrahim started the scoring play by driving toward the left corner before firing a low cross into the box, where Hamze Nur fired a hard shot high and off the glove of Edward Little goalie Eli St. Laurent.

“I was looking for my teammates, one of them to get on to it,” Ibrahim said. “I’ve been doing that all season, and Hamze’s the man that got on to it today. Props to him.”

Ibrahim said he was happy to see Nur take his pass and get off a solid, on-target shot.


“It got me excited. Seeing that made me really happy because we really needed that goal and to start quickly this game,” Ibrahim said.

The Blue Devils kept the momentum up for a few more minutes, forcing St. Laurent (nine saves) to make back-to-back saves 17 minutes in.

Edward Little’s Ben Cole, bottom right, and two Lewistoin players collied in the air during Saturday’s Class A North semifinal at Central Maine Community College in Auburn. Emma Meserve photo

But around the midway point of the first half, the Red Eddies’ attack found its footing. Edward Little had consecutive corner kick chances, but Lewiston goalie Payson Goyette (10 saves) punched the first one away. The Eddies got the ball back and fired a shot that a running and diving Goyette stopped an knocked out of bounds for another corner, which didn’t generate a significant scoring threat by Edward Little.

The Lewiston defense made three defensive saves with 13 minutes left in the half, first stopping Jack Thompson, then Mohamed Adow before a Blue Devils defender headed away the third attempt.

St. Laurent made a diving save on Ibrahim with 35 seconds left in the first half, and the teams went into halftime stuck on the 1-0 score.

“We felt really good about the way we were playing,” Max Thompson said. “I think that we felt like if we continue to generate those opportunities that we’d find the back of the net. We had (done so) all year, and we felt really good about what we were doing. And credit to Lewiston. Their defense was good. They won a lot of balls. They kept us uncomfortable and really didn’t give us a lot of space to operate with.”


The Red Eddies held a 7-6 advantage in shots on goal in the first half, but were held to only three in the second, including one that was saved by Goyette 10 seconds into the second half.

Edward Little’s best chance came with 21 minutes left when defender Caleb Albert’s free kick from far out went high toward a leaping Goyette, who secured the save.

“I was just making sure that I wouldn’t drop it and cause a chance that they would score and it would go into overtime,” Goyette said.

Lewiston goalie Payson Goyette makes a diving save of a shot by Edward Little’s Abdihakim “Dayow” Daud during Saturday’s playoff game in Auburn that Lewiston won 1-0. Russ Dillingham/Sun Journal

Lewiston had four shots on goal, plus a shot from Ibrahim with less than 25 minutes to play that came from the left side and went off the inside of the right post, but somehow stayed out of the goal before being cleared off the goal line by the Red Eddies.

“I was very surprised because I thought that went in,” Ibrahim said. “I thought it hit the back of the goal and came out, and so was my coach, but, you know, we hang through it.”

Gish said the Blue Devils’ attack in the second half was “calculated” and that they couldn’t back down defensively while nursing the one-goal lead.

“If you wait for them, if you wait for any team, they’re going to execute. So you got to play to win, you got to play like you’re pressuring to win, and that’s what we did,” Gish said. “And then we were measured with our opportunities. We attacked a little differently in the second half than we did in the first, just to manage the clock.”

The clock ran out for Edward Little in the game, and on their season.

“Today, there really wasn’t a whole lot for us,” Max Thompson said. “So it hurts. It hurts to end it early, it really does.”

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