Cooper Saul of Liberty (18) looks down on Gavin Lewis (10) of Prairie after being fouled during a substate final football game, Wednesday, May 25, 2022, at Prairie High School in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. (Geoff Stellfox/The Gazette)
CEDAR RAPIDS – When you’re playing a substate final game, it’s scoreless, it’s halftime, and there’s a long weather delay, how do you handle it?
For the Cedar Rapids Prairie boys football club, coaches hang out at the John Wall Field concession stand, get updates from the activities director of Prairie and Iowa City Liberty opponents and pass updates to players.
“Just give us enough time so we can prepare mentally,” Prairie Coach Curt Lewis said. “We thought this was going to be a physical game, but this is really a mental game. When you get a break, it’s all about how you get in?”
“It’s honestly tough,” Prairie midfielder Blake Halleran said. “First he said 30 minutes, then he said hours. Then it was half an hour, then two hours. In the locker room, they were all down. We had to raise our heads, stay in this game. When it finally came out for the second round, we were all fired. .
Thrown away after a lot of positive thoughts during breaks and various dance contests. It was Halleran announcing the winner.
“Yeah, Blake with Griddy,” smiled Gavin Lewis of Prairie.
“Yes, absolutely,” Halleran said. “I’ve always worked on dance moves. Yeah, it’s The Griddy.
The winning griddy is then the winning goal. Halleran’s penalty kick conversion with 7:48 left finished giving Prairie ninth-ranked win 1-0 over No. 10 Iowa City Liberty
Prairie (16-3) has qualified for its fifth state tournament since 2015, the second year in a row. The Hawks have never won a state tournament game.
You believe your cleat is the focus of emphasis for this group.
“We’ve said all year that we want to make history and win our first game in Des Moines,” Halleran said.
The team played 1-0 games in the regular season, Prairie also won, so this is expected to be the same type. Both teams have some chances here, but it looks like extra time is inevitable until Lewis makes a mistake when he competes with the ball with the back into the net and about five Liberty players defending him.
“I just got in there, and he was around me, like 15 times,” said Lewis, the head coach’s son. “I won, I won, and that’s important.”
“He draws,” Coach Lewis said. “.It’s funny because he’s back to (the goal), he’s not going anywhere. But he got it one year ago, and he got it back this year for us … He has an amazing campaign for us.
Liberty goalkeeper Conley Sunblad went to the left on a penalty kick, with Halleran kicking to the left. Jump on the champion.
“I stay out here all the time after training, other guys stay with me 20, 30 minutes after each workout,” Halleran said. “You really have to take a kick. It’s a free kick, an operant, a dribble, a shooting, a penalty. It takes extra work to get here. It’s not just about me. The team has been really good all year.
Liberty finished 15-4 in their first season in Class 3A.
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