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DCG girls soccer tops North Polk to win its third straight Iowa State title

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DES MOINES – The stakes were high in a battle between No. 1 North Polk and No. 3 Dallas-Center Grimes in the Class 2A final of the Iowa girls state soccer tournament.

DCG was competing for its third straight title, while North Polk was looking for its first state trophy in 2A.

Six unanswered goals from DCG completed their three-peat Saturday in a 6-1 win over the top-seeded Comets.

“When I asked about some of their goals and stuff, it wasn’t just about winning the conference, it wasn’t just about making it to a state tournament. They said, ‘We want to win this thing again,'” said DCG coach Dan James. “This senior group has been to the state finals four years in a row and gotten three… they have made DCG a very special place here over the last four years.”

The Comets were the ones to set the tone with an opening strike at 26:07. Senior Abby Bell dribbled down the middle of the court and put away a shot that gave North Polk a 1-0 lead.

“Being one goal down, we knew that it is not very common for us to be stubborn in that way, but we know that if we come together as a family, we can overcome it and we did that when the stage was clear,” said senior Kylie Knief

About 19 minutes later, however, Knief found herself trying to take a penalty. She blocked out the noise, composed herself and sent a shot that leveled the score at 1-1 just before halftime.

“Everyone tries to upset you, I just took a couple deep breaths and just buried it in the corner,” Knief said.

The Mustangs were aggressive to open the second half and took the lead. Senior Hannah Renz was the top assist getter for DCG this season. Eight minutes into the second half, Renz showed that with a long ball that junior Landry Glasgow found. The third-year Mustang scored a header that gave the Mustangs a 2-1 lead.

“(Hannah) just had a great cross straight into the box, and I happened to be there and it was perfect,” Glasgow said.

Glasgow wasn’t ready yet. About 10 minutes later, she sent a shot from 15 yards into the penalty area to extend the lead to 3–1. From then on, the Mustangs continued to pile up the goals. Senior Ella Forsyth got into the action with an assist from junior Alex Hofbauer. Sophomore Kenna Knief ended the game with a goal in the closing minutes.

“From the beginning of the season we knew it was possible and that we could do it,” Kylie Knief said. “But I always use the words, ‘We are a family’… we had an emotional speech before the game and I think because we all come together as a team, we just know what we want and strive for it.”

DCG ends its championship season with an 18-3 record. Kylie Knief and Renz earned spots on the 2A all-tournament team. The DCG girls soccer state title victory came hours after the DCG boys defeated Des Moines Hoover 3-2 to capture the first state title in program history.

“I texted (boys coach Collin Lane) today. I said, ‘We can make something special happen today,’” James said. “It’s a big moment. Any time a school gets two championships in one day, I mean, that happens very rarely… so it’s a pretty special experience for these kids at DCG.”

More: Dallas Center-Grimes, powered by its seniors, captures Iowa’s first boys soccer state title

North Polk finishes the season with a 19-2 record. Senior Madi Nemmers and junior Addi Ollendike were selected to the all-tournament team.

Marc Ray is the high school sports reporter for the Iowa City Press-Citizen. He can be reached at [email protected]and on X, formerly Twitter, on @themarcszn.