Lady Cats Earn Hard-Fought Draw in Up and Down Week

by Ken Brown

WINOOSKI – The Hazen Union girls’ soccer team came back to salvage a draw against Winooski last week, before running into powerhouse Missisquoi, putting them at 0-9-1 on the season.

Gabby Stanciu scored unassisted in the second half to lead Hazen Union to their first draw of the season at Winooski last Tuesday. Madeline Kaiser made six stops on the day and the Lady Cat defense was solid all afternoon. The Lady Spartans improved to 1-7-1 on the season.

“It was a battle that I thought we dominated possession-wise, but we just had a hard time finishing our scoring chances,” said head coach Harry Besett.

Division II power Missisquoi Valley continued to pummel the Mountain League last week with an 8-1 win over Hazen Union on Friday. Ava Hubbard found the back of the net three times for the Lady Thunderbirds and Alex Brouillette, Abby Paquette, Destinee Pigeon, Kerri Campbell, and Madison Gagne all chipped in with a goal apiece. Madison Aiken made two stops on the day to preserve the win. Eighth grader Isabelle Gouin buried a feed from Tessa Luther for Hazen Union’s lone score. Madeline Kaiser made 13 saves for Hazen Union in the loss. Missisquoi improved to 7-3-1 with the win and has outscored its opponents 35-14 on the season.

“Isabelle joined the squad a couple of weeks into the season and she is very hard working, quick, and composed well beyond her age in front of the goal. Tessa did a great job in an attacking midfield role all match, but especially to find the through ball that broke their defense and allowed Isabelle to run behind for a one-on-one with their keeper. I think she has the potential to be a huge attacking threat for Hazen for years to come,” said Besett.

The Lady Cats will host Craftsbury Academy (CA) at Hudson Fields on Wednesday before traveling to Richford on Saturday afternoon. Their match versus CA will be the first annual OSSU Derby, a game created by Besett and CA’s head coach Tom Silva. The two teams will exchange pennants and gifts before the match to honor the game of soccer with an emphasis on sportsmanship, which has been a talking point around the state the last few weeks. The match will be live-streamed on Hardwick Community Television with the legendary Lance Hall on the call.