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story.lead_photo.caption Luke Hynes of Helias runs to retrieve the ball after a thrown-in during Tuesday night's Class 3 District 9 Tournament game against Warrensburg at the Crusader Athletic Complex. Photo by Sally Ince / News Tribune.

Heading into Tuesday night's Class 3 District 9 Tournament opener, Luke Hynes already shared the Helias single-game assist record with four.

After Tuesday night's game, the record is all his own.

Hynes totaled five assists Tuesday night as the Crusaders blanked the Warrensburg Tigers 8-0 in a game shortened by the mercy rule at the Crusader Athletic Complex.

"I wasn't really thinking about it, but when I got three so quickly, I thought I had a chance," Hynes said. "I was just trying to get to five."

With the win, the top-seeded Crusaders (7-15-1) advance to take on second-seeded Camdenton (12-12) for the title at 6 p.m. Thursday.

"It's obviously the most important game we've had this season," Hynes said. "We want to get the win and move on to sectionals."

The Crusaders have battled injuries for much of the regular season. But the injured players have started to rejoin the lineup in recent weeks and this team looked like what coach Jay Hebenheimer though it would entering the season.

"The results over the past couple of weeks don't show it, but we've gotten better each and every game recently," Hebenheimer said. "The steam was building, we were knocking a lot of the rust off and we were getting back on track."

If the Crusaders felt any pressure with the start of the postseason, it went away quickly as Helias scored four times in the first 14-plus minutes.

"We wanted the first goal, then build off of that," Hebenheimer said

Connor Mudd got the Crusaders on the board about four minutes into the game, assisted by Hynes. The freshman then added his second goal about eight minutes later to double Helias' lead.

"He's going to do special things for us," Hebenheimer said. "His positioning is top notch for a freshman, he knows where he's supposed to be out there."

It took less than a minute for the Crusaders to find the back of the net again. Kaleb Wilson tallied the goal on a header, assisted by Hynes.

Hynes then got his third assist less than two minutes later on a goal by Isaac Johnson that made it 4-0 a little more than 14 minutes into the game.

Johnson scored with 10:50 remaining off a Hynes assist. The shot from distance bounced off a player before spinning past the Warrensburg keeper into the net.

Wilson got his second goal of the half with exactly eight minutes remaining, assisted by Sam Thompson. The Crusaders then took a 7-0 advantage into intermission when Zach Paschal scored off an assist by Logan Wilson.

The game lasted less than four minutes into the second half before ending by the eight-goal margin. Kaleb Wilson tallied the game-ender, with Hynes picking up his record-setting assist.

The Crusaders spent a lot of the time trying to play the ball through Hynes to help him get the record.

"I know it was hard for the team to not to try to finish the ball, but to play it through me," he said. "I felt a little bad."

Hynes had four assists in a game earlier this season.

"Luke can take over a game," Hebenheimer said. "We like to work the ball through Luke because he so strong with it and his distributing skills are off the charts.

"He can slot it when he needs to, he can knock it over the top when he needs to, he can just drip it off when he needs to do that."

Warrensburg finished with just two shots as Ben Rehagen recorded the shutout in goal for Helias.

Helias defeated Camdenton 6-0 in a mid-September game at the Crusader Athletic Complex.

"We're going to be ready to play," Hebenheimer said. "They're not the same team we played the first time, we know that."

The Helias-Camdenton winner will host District 10 winner in the sectional round next Tuesday night. Glendale (11-11) and Lebanon (17-8) will play for the District 10 Tournament title Thursday night.

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