Before the match started, a slew of severe weather advisories surfaced.
The forecast promised heavy rains. Gusts of winds topping 35 mph, too. And it delivered.
However, the conditions never hampered No. 4 Isidore Newman or No. 5 Catholic of New Iberia at Michael Lupin Field on Monday night.
Each squad pieced together one-two combinations, connected on through balls and crosses inside the box that materialized into clean scoring opportunities.
Newman executed, though.
In the 90th minute, Evan DeBlanc drilled a header into the ground. It landed and rolled past the plane of the post, lifting the Greenies (15-1-4) to a 1-0 win and into the semifinals against top-seeded St. Louis this week.
“Came out flying in the second half, but nothing fell,” DeBlanc said. “I saw John David (Bailey) dribbling through a couple of guys, saw the ball come over the top and just went after it.”
Catholic of New Iberia (17-5-4) threatened from the beginning.
Thomas Purdy maneuvered, positioning himself to unload a shot. Sandwiched between Purdy and the post, Newman keeper David Terral dove left, punching the attempt out to preserve the scoreless tie.
But they weren’t finished. In the ensuing 10 minutes, Catholic of New Iberia hammered five more shots which were denied.
Then, the Greenies woke up. The second half featured a dozen attempts. Some skidded wide. Some ballooned over the post, and others were scooped up or deflected.
Except DeBlanc’s game-sealing header.
“Before I even talk about our team, Catholic was tremendous tonight,” Greenies coach Matt Jacques said.
“But it was one of those nights where you thought you were controlling things and it just didn’t go our way until that one shot. Luckily, we had that one that got in. Both keepers made some incredible saves. Hats off to them. It really was a very even match.”