The Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy captain found players draped all over him for the first 70 minutes of the match, rarely without a defender diving at his legs to dislodge the ball.
So it was no surprise that when the senior midfielder found himself with some space in the form of a corner kick, he took full advantage.
Thompson curled a corner directly into the net with less than nine minutes to play in the match, his first of two late goals helping spur No.2 CVCA to a 2-0 victory and its second state title in four years.
“This is the definition of a team right here,” said Thompson, who as a freshman helped the school win its first championship. “This is the best team I’ve been on at CVCA.”
Thompson added a 20-yard strike at the 5:41 mark to push the lead to two goals, but it was his corner kick that broke open what had been a tightly-contested defensive game.
“One of those fantastic mistakes,” was how CVCA head coach Jason Spodnik described Thompson’s in-swinger from the left side of the goal.
Looking for a player at the back of the area, Thompson’s effort sailed high and to his left, bending towards the right upper corner of the frame. Alter keeper Matt Dorow got a hand on the ball, but it deflected backwards and off the inside of the right post.
“I was just trying to put it in a dangerous spot,” Thompson said. “Apparently it went to a really dangerous spot.”
Having only given up six goals all season, Thompson’s first goal seemed all CVCA (18-1-4) would need.
But two minutes later Thompson added some insurance. Off a CVCA goal kick, Alter failed to make the clearance and the ball ultimately ending up at Thompson's feet. He took the ball down the right side, beating Dorow with a low drive just inside the left post.
Thompson said he expected tight marking from Alter (18-3-2), which itself had allowed only eight goals in 22 previous matches.
“We though they would cover (Matt) Mason and me,” he said. “We just had to be soccer players and be smart about it.”
With his team playing in an eighth state final, Alter head coach Bob Eillis was matter-of-fact about the game-changing play.
“(Dorow) got his hand on it,” Ellis said. “Instead of going up the ball went back. The rest is history.”
Making CVCA’s title more impressive is that it returned just three varsity players from last year’s team. The Royals backline, which has been one of its strengths all season, was entirely new.
“Coming into the season I didn’t know what to expect,” Thompson said. “But these young guys did it, they really stepped up.”