BILLINGS – Billings Skyview and Billings Central took similar paths to get to State Championship Saturday. Both won their divisions with the No. 1-ranked offense and defense and ran into the second-best team in the final. But that’s where the similarities stop.
The Falcons jumped on Missoula Big Sky from the opening kick in the Class AA girls state soccer championship game, taking a lead in the sixth minute and doubling it in the 18th. And that was more than enough.
“Our defense held their strong offense really well, and we were able to connect through everybody,” said Skyview forward Jordan Roe. “It was a team effort, and we were able to pop some in early – that really helped boost all of our confidence.”
But Skyview didn’t stop there. Seven minutes into the second half, the lead was 4-0, and fittingly ended 6-0 with two Roe goals – for the program’s first state title.
“I want to say every game, she has either a goal or an assist this year,” Falcons head coach Cam Icenoggle said. “She’s so explosive, such a competitor, a fantastic, phenomenal player. She shows up all the time, and it was on full display (Saturday).”
Roe’s massive tournament – five goals and two assists – made her the state’s leading scorer in 2018.
Central’s Morgan Ferestad had that Class A title wrapped up weeks ago. She ended up tying the single-season all-class record with 37 goals, but she was held in check in a defensive championship game. So a new hero had to step up for the Rams. Luckily, senior goalie Maggie Lyle saved her best for last.
“Leading up this whole week, we’ve been working on (penalty kicks),” said Lyle. “I have a really good goalie coach, who helps me look at their body language and their eyes. I could definitely tell that our team was more prepared for that shootout.”
“She was our hero (Saturday),” said teammate Tess Hansen. “I know PKs are terrible on goalies. The first thing I said to her was, ‘No matter what, we’re not going to blame this on you.’ PKs can go any way, and Maggie saved the day.”
It was just the second shootout in state championship history, but the result was all too familiar for Central, the program’s ninth Class A girls state title in 11 years. And both trophies might want to get cozy. Roe and Ferestad will both be back, plus each team’s second-leading scorers. Is it too early to dream?
“The goal is always the same,” said Icenoggle. “A good squad returning, so we’ll see.”
After this, only one outcome will seemingly suffice.