by Ken Brown
HARDWICK – In front of their home crowd, after enduring growing pains of a young team throughout the season, the Hazen Union girls’ soccer team earned their first win last week against Richford on Hudson Fields.
Alexis Christensen scored the eventual game-winner in the first half unassisted, and the defense did the rest as the Lady Cats blanked Richford at home last Tuesday, 2-0. Natalie Michaud buried a feed from Caitlyn Davison in the second half to give Hazen Union a two-goal cushion. Madeline Kaiser made 11 stops on the day and the Lady Cat defense recorded their first shutout of the season. Aubrey Fadden made nine saves in the loss for Richford as they fell to 5-7.
“The girls did great and put a strong team effort in for 80 minutes and got the win they deserved,” said head coach Harry Besett. Our offense was calm and patient and our defense was solid and it was a perfect response to a tough previous match. The players should be proud of that performance, know that their fans and community are, as well, and it represents the best preview of the very high potential for a team that doesn’t have any seniors on it,” added Besett.
Eva Hebert scored twice to lead Twinfield-Cabot to a 4-2 home win on Friday in the regular season finale for both teams. Natalie Michaud continued to emerge as a dangerous goal scorer for the Lady Cats with two more tallies on the day. Madeline Kaiser made six saves in the loss as Hazen Union ended the regular season at 1-12-1. Ida Astick made six stops for the Lady Trojans, who ended the regular season at 8-6.
“This was a very close match and it is another preparation for our first round challenge of Mount St. Joseph Academy (MSJ) this week. If we can pull the upset, we’ve got the exciting prospect of a rematch with Twinfield-Cabot in the quarters, something we’d be very excited about after such a tight first match,” said Besett.
The Lady Cats will travel to fourth seeded MSJ on Wednesday in the first round of the Division IV playoffs. If they advance, they would face the winner of Twinfield-Cabot vs. Sharon Academy in the quarterfinals on Friday.