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Notre Dame boys soccer wins conference and earns top district seed

Senior Will Dodson scored two goals in Notre Dame’s 3-2 double-overtime win over Jackson last Wednesday night. Photo by Jay Forness

For the second year in a row, Notre Dame boys soccer one upped Jackson for the Bulldogs to win their second-straight SEMO Conference Championship.

Leading the Bulldogs (14-6-1) in goals against the Indians (7-12) was Notre Dame’s all-time leader in goals senior Will Dodson. He finished with a game-high two goals for the Bulldogs to capture the conference title, bringing his overall season total to 31.

On top of his 31 shots put in the back of the net, Dodson has also led Notre Dame in assists with 15 (77 total points). Will’s current all-time goal total for the currently stands at 144.

Also registering four points versus Jackson for the Bulldogs was fellow senior Cole Bruenderman, who produced his team’s other goal along with having two assists. Notre Dame sophomore JP Stovall also had an assist in the win over the Indians.

Bruenderman currently paces Dodson in points, goals and assists as he’s come up with a total of 54 points (20 goals and 14 assists).

Dodson and Bruenderman are the only Bulldogs to have recorded double-digit goals or assists as junior Bryce Sides and sophomore Connor Adams have scored 17 (six goals, five assists) and 15 points (five goals, five assists), respectively.

Defensively, Notre Dame has come up with a total of nine shutouts through 21 games. The Bulldogs only allowed one goal in three other contests.

Not only did Notre Dame’s win over Jackson win the Bulldogs another conference title, but it also helped them secure the No. 1 seed in the upcoming Class 3 District 1 Tournament.

The Bulldogs earned the top seed over a 16-win and No. 2 seeded Cape Central squad (16-3-1) they beat 2-1 back on Oct. 11. Farmington (11-4) earned the third seed as the Knights also fell to Notre Dame 4-2 on Sept. 15.

To begin the district tournament, the Bulldogs will face eighth-seeded Festus (4-14) on Saturday. Notre Dame will then either face No. 4 Hillsboro (13-7) or No. 5 De Soto (9-7) Tuesday.

The Class 3 District 1 Championship game is slated for Nov. 3 as the Bulldogs are hoping to win their first district title since they made the final four in 2020.

Nick McNeal covers high school sports, college sports and community events for The Cash-Book Journal. He graduated from Southeast Missouri State University with a degree in multimedia journalism and has lived in Cape Girardeau County for the past five years. He can be reached at cbjsports@socket. net.

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