Scott Tribbey knows firsthand what it’s like to play the role of hero in the hotly-contested crosstown soccer rivalry between City High and West High.
Tribbey was happy to relinquish that role to teammate Gaby Baloci on Monday night.
A year after Tribbey’s buzzer-beating goal was the difference in a 1-0 City High win, it was Balociwho came up big.
Baloci scored just less than six minutes into overtime as Class 3A fourth-ranked City High rallied for a 2-1 win over No. 12 West High at the University of Iowa Soccer Complex. “This is better than last year,” Tribbey said. “It’s an amazing feeling. The whole game Gaby was trying, trying and trying, I’m really happy for him. He has grown so much and I’m just really happy for him.”
Baloci’s late goal helped City High snap a two-match losing skid and improved the Little Hawks to 13-3 on the season.
It also capped a late rally that saw City High score twice in the final 25 minutes to win its second straight match over West High.
Baloci beat a defender into the left side of the box and hammered a shot into the upper-right corner of the goal past West High goalkeeper Jack Chen.
“My coaches told me to just keep dribbling in and if you have a chance, take a shot,” Baloci said. “That’s what I did. We had our chances and we put them away.”
It was more late heartache in the rivalry for three-time defending state champion West High.
The Trojans led for more than 50 minutes after Antonio Sanchez scored off a Bennet Luethje assist in the sixth minute.
West High had a three-match winning streak snapped with the loss and dropped to 10-7 on the season.
“I think the guys had a good, positive vibe going into tonight and maybe we just ran out of steam a little bit,” West High coach Brad Stiles said.
West High’s 1-0 lead held up until Victor Brown-Rodriguez tied the score with a rocket of a shot form 40 yards out in the 60th minute.
“It was a great goal, off a really nice volley,” City High senior Adam Nicholson said. “I wasn’t expecting it.”
West High had a golden opportunity to take the lead back with 11:45 left when Alex Andersen was fouled in the box, setting up a Sanchez penalty kick.
However, City High senior goalkeeper Daniel Goldenstein came up with a diving save to keep the score tied.
“Daniel did an unbelievable job not only on the penalty kick but a couple of saves that he made at the beginning of the game were exceptional,” City High coach Jose Michel Fajardo said. “I’m proud of him.”
Reach Ryan Murken at 319-339-7369 or email@example.com and follow him on Twitter at @rmmurken.