Blaine started the postseason with its "best effort" as it defeated visiting South Whidbey 1-0 in a Class 1A Northwest District Tournament game on Wednesday, Oct. 24.
The win in the loser-out contest improved the Borderites to 7-7-3.
"This was their best effort," Blaine coach Dan Steelquist said in a phone interview. "We controlled the play."
The Borderites advance to the district tournament semifinals where they will face Lynden Christian in a game that will determine seeding for the tri-district tournament on Friday, Oct. 26.
Blaine and South Whidbey each played a scoreless game until the 75th minute when Hope Wilkett scored on an assist from Olivia Olason. The assist came on a cross from Olason, who found Wilkett at the top of the box from 40 yards out. Wilkett took the ball on the run and put it in the back of the net for a 1-0 lead.
"It was a great combination goal," Steelquist said. "(Olivia's) cross was spot-on."
Steelquist credited his team's midfield and possession play with being a difference in the victory. Anna Hewitt recorded the shutout in goal for the Borderites, who only let South Whidbey have two shots on goal.
"Our backs and our midfield played well together really well," Steelquist said. "It was a complete game for us. That is what you want when you get into the playoffs."
BLAINE 1, SOUTH WHIDBEY 0
Scoring: Goal: Hope Wilkett (Blaine), assist: Olivia Olason, time: 75:00. Shots on goal: South Whidbey 2, Blaine 6. Goalies (saves): South Whidbey: Elle Greene (2); Blaine: Anna Hewitt (2).