DES MOINES — Until Tuesday, the last unbeaten, untied boys’ soccer state champion in Class 3A was Iowa City West in 2010.
The current Trojans had an up-close view of the latest installment of 3A perfection.
“They run,” West Coach Brad Stiles said after the Trojans fell to Waukee, 3-1, in the state championship match at Cownie Soccer Park. “And they run a lot. And the guys off the bench run. It’s hard to beat.”
The loss snapped an 18-match win streak for West (18-2), the state runner-up for the fourth time (2008, 2007, 2004) in school history. The Trojans entered the day with wins in their last six state-championship match appearances dating back to 2009.
West is now 9-4 all-time in state finals. No school in any class can match the Trojans’ 13 finals appearances, nine state titles nor their 41 victories at the state tournament.
“I definitely think they outworked us today,” West junior forward Micah Frisbie said. “Stiles had a good game plan. I thought we were ready, but we just didn’t execute good enough.”
Waukee got on the scoreboard with a goal from freshman CJ Coppola less than five minutes into the match. The Waukee lead ballooned to 3-0 by the midway point of the second half by turning two West fouls into scores via a long free kick for a goal by junior Edi Cokovic, then a penalty-kick conversion from senior Justin Crawmer.
“A free kick and a penalty kick is the difference in this game,” Stiles said. “My guys missed the first 10 minutes of the half and it cost us.”
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Frisbie scored the lone goal for West with 18:51 left in the match. He will be a key returner next season for West, which brings back seven of its top-nine goal scorers but loses leading scorer and two-time MVC Athlete of the Year Gada Ambo.
“It will definitely be a big motivation,” Frisbie said. “We’ll be losing some good players like Gada, but Waukee will be, too. We’ll be back for sure.”
It was just the third match all season in which West was limited to one goal or less.
The state championship is the fourth overall and second in a row for Waukee (22-0), winner of 28 matches in a row dating back to last season.
“I was pleased,” Waukee Coach Carlos Acebey said. “You can’t say that I am not. A little frustrated that we let that goal slip in because I just felt that would have helped to cement our place in history. To be able to say that we are part of Iowa City West and (West Des Moines) Valley having back-to-back seasons as champions is something, also. It has been nine years since Iowa City West went undefeated, so that is another accomplishment for these boys. They played fantastic for most of the game and I am really happy for them.”
In Tuesday’s 3A consolation match, Cedar Rapids Washington (15-6) earned the third-place trophy as senior Brooks Papendick scored two goals in a 3-0 victory over Bettendorf.
CLASS 3A STATE CHAMPIONSHIP
No. 1 Waukee 3, No. 2 Iowa City West 1
Goals — ICW: Micah Frisbie (9); WAU: CJ Coppola (11), Edi Cokovich (18), Justin Crawmer (4).
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