City Defeats West in Penalties

The City High mens’ soccer team improved their season to 15-0 after defeating West High 4-3 in a penalty shootout.

The game came down to penalties. West High’s Adam Rose ’17 shot to the left. City’s goalkeeper, Sam Tomek ’17, dove the same way. Game over.

“It’s something that’s really exciting,” Tomek said. “It’s so much adrenaline. It’s crazy. [It feels] pretty amazing.”

The game was tied at zero after 80 minutes and continued into two ten minute overtime periods in which neither team could find the back of the net. The Little Hawks had a chance to score early on in the game when Nasim Salih ’16 drew a penalty after being taken down in the box in the fourteenth minute. Victor Brown-Rodriguez ’16 shot the penalty, but West High’s Zach Frisbie ’17 made a diving save to his right to maintain the 0-0 tie.

Brown-Rodriguez got a chance to face Frisbie again as the first penalty shooter for the Little Hawks. He scored to give City High a positive start to the penalty shootout. West High’s first kicker followed up by putting his penalty away to tie at 1-1. After Collin O’Meara ’16 scored in the back of the net, the Trojans missed their second penalty. Sarrive Rukakiza ’16, who had played tough defense all game, sailed his penalty over the crossbar. The Trojan’s next penalty shooter was able to score to tie the score at 2-2. Both teams scored again to advance the score to 3-3. City High’s Gaby Baloci ’16 shot the fifth penalty for the Little Hawks. After Rose had his shot saved by Tomek, the student section erupted and stormed the field to mob the City High goalie.

“It feels great,” Jose Fajardo, head coach, said. “The guys played great. They played like men again today. It’s a tough game; it’s always a tough game.”

Fajardo believes this victory gave the Little Hawks chance to gain momentum going into the playoffs as the season winds down.

“I feel it’s a good boost of confidence,” Fajardo said. “We’ve been like this the whole year, so hopefully we just can keep this consistency and keep doing the same things we’ve been doing so far.”

The Little Hawks remain the only undefeated boys soccer team in the state in class 3A at 15-0. The Little Hawk plays next Thursday, May 19, against Dubuque Senior on the City High turf.