WILLIAMSTON — The Troy High girls soccer team had been here before, watching the final seconds tick off the clock in the Division 1 state final, the crowd growing louder with each moment.
Though the past two seasons, it’s been the Colts’ opponent who rushed the field after victory.
But this time, with the chants of “We are T.C.” raining down on Williamston High’s field June 15, it was the Colts ready to celebrate.
Troy beat Grandville High 2-1 for the state championship, after finishing runner-up the past two seasons.
“After three years, it’s honestly unreal to win after all that,” senior forward Kayla Porter said. “After crying after the first game, crying after the second game, then finally winning after the third game, we can cry tears of joy because we won. I think we really, really deserved it.”
Like it has much of this season, the Colts battled back to win the title.
Grandville struck first when Sydney Blitchok hit the far corner of the net to make it 1-0 with 25:51 remaining in the first half.
“I think the quality of that goal actually helped us,” senior goalie Alison Holland said. “It was a great shot and not our faults; we couldn’t really do anything about it. I think it gave us confidence like, ‘Everyone has these goals. You can come back.’”
Troy responded just four minutes later, when senior forward Madison Hirsch settled a pass down from sophomore midfield Sarah Troccoli and popped it over the goalie’s head.
In the second half, Troy scored the game-winner, with just more than 26 minutes remaining, on a shot from Porter and assisted by senior midfielder Erin Wrubel.
“I had a lot of space, and I saw the goalie coming at me, so I just shot it,” Porter said. “I didn’t even know if it was going to be a good shot.”
Grandville had its chances at the end, but Holland and the Colts’ defense stood up to the challenge.
“Grandville battled so hard, so to withstand the pressure there at the end, to come from behind, it’s stuff that dreams are made of,” Troy coach Brian Zawislak said.
The Colts finish the season 15-6-3 and with the program’s first state championship since 2003.
“In fact, we just had a 10-year reunion with our 2003 team this past May, and these girls got to meet those girls,” Zawislak said. “Now they get to leave their mark on the program, as well.”