Photo by Jeff Yoder
Your Prep Sports
DES MOINES – As West High was surging down the stretch sophomore Micah Frisbie was starting to slump.
The second leading scorer for West High this season had struggled to put goals away over the final few weeks, going six matches without a score.
Frisbie couldn’t have picked a better time or a bigger stage to for a slump-snapping performance. Frisbie scored the game-winning goal less than four minutes into overtime to lift Class 3A fifth-ranked West High to a 2-1 win over No. 8 Ankeny Centennial (15-5) in a 3A quarterfinal at Cownie Soccer Complex in Des Moines.
“He’s been in kind of a funk but he made up for it,” West High coach Brad Stiles said. “He’s been in a little bit of slump and that’s going to turn him around, I know it.”
Frisbie scored the game-winner with 6:46 left in the first overtime to cap a crazy 20-minute stretch to end the match that featured all the scoring.
The 11th goal of the season for Frisbie and first since May 5 sent the defending state champion Trojans back to the 3A title game for the second consecutive season.
“I haven’t been able to put any goals away for a while,” Frisbie said. “It’s been making me pretty mad honestly so putting that away feels pretty good.”
The win was the 13th straight for streaking West High (17-3) which will face No. 10 Waukee (13-5) in the semifinals on Friday at 5 p.m.
Waukee knocked off top-ranked West Des Moines Valley 2-1 in overtime on Thursday.
“We play together well as a team and we just keep believing in each other,” West High senior Ahmed Abdalla said. “Everyone believes on this team and every just does their job.”
Last yaer West High used a late game-tying goal in a quarterfinal upset of top-seeded Cedar Rapids Prairie to spark its state-title run.
The Trojans nearly had the tables turned this season.
Gada Ambo broke a scoreless tie with his team-leading 19th goal of the season in the 67th minute to put West High in command.
Ankeny Centennial got a late equalizer when Michael Brandt scored on a header with 2:29 left.
“If it was going to happen that’s exactly the way it was going to happen and that’s exactly the way they were going to score on us and I knew it,” Stiles said. “We just didn’t execute right at the end there.”
Brandt’s goal forced overtime and gave Ankeny Centennial momentum heading into the extra session.
The Jaguars got an added bonus in overtime when Ambo was sent off with a yellow card in the final minute of regulation.
Frisbie made sure none of that mattered.
“Gada has been leading us the whole year and without him it’s hard,” Frisbie said. “Stiles said that we needed somebody to step up after that and I knew I had to.”
Three minutes into the overtime senior Kaiya Luethje headed a ball ahead to Frisbie who secured the ball, beat a defender and then fired a shot past Centennial keeper Cole Pankey for the winning goal.
“I saw the ball came in to Kaiya and he flicked it in and another guy got a first touch on it and I kicked it away from him and I knew I had to put it away,” Frisbie said. “I put it right between his legs.”
Frisbie had three goals in a pair of May 5 matches, scoring twice in a 3-1 win over Ames and adding a goal in a 3-0 victory over Muscatine.
Prior to his game-winner on Thursday he hadn’t scored since.
“He did great for us at the beginning and the middle of the season and I think the number of minutes as a sophomore just kind of got to him,” Stiles said. “It was just a little bit of a funk or a slump if you will and I knew it and he needed it and we were trying to work to get him out of it and he listened that time.”