Murphy Leads Wild Wildcat Comeback

by Ken Brown

WILLIAMSTOWN – A freshman saved the day for the Hazen Union boys’ soccer team last week as they battled back from an early deficit to beat Paine Mountain (Williamstown-Northfield) in overtime, improving to 4-5-1 on the season.

Seville Murphy scored his first career varsity goals in the absolute biggest moments last Tuesday as the Wildcats clawed out a gutsy 3-2 overtime win at Paine Mountain. Down 2-0, Cody Trudeau pulled the visitors within a goal, with a blast from long distance in the second half. With two minutes left in regulation, Morgan Michaud fed Seville for the improbable equalizer, sending the match into overtime.

“We were fortunate to have another fully benched game and the guys came in with a good deal of enthusiasm and ambition. We did a good job of possessing the ball and dominating play for much of the match and Seville played his first full match at the varsity level and did not disappoint!,” said head coach Allison Paradee.

Hazen Union road the momentum from Murphy’s equalizer right into overtime as the freshman buried a feed from Jadon Baker two minutes in for the game-winner. Baker finished the day with two assists and Tyler Rivard made five stops in net. The loss dropped Paine Mountain to 1-9 on the season.

“The boys created a number of scoring opportunities on top of Seville’s equalizer and game-winner, with some good combinations from Cody, Jadon, and Sullivan Laflam. As our regular season wraps up, I’m able to think ahead to what next season may look like and while we’ll have a young roster, I see a lot of potential. Some of our freshmen are becoming incredibly strong soccer players already, as well as good sportsmen, and leaders on the field,” said Paradee.

Unfortunately for Paradee’s squad, the week ended on a low note as they were forced to forfeit a very winnable home match against Spaulding on Saturday. Due to the excessive amount of yellow and red cards Hazen players have received this fall, the Vermont Principal’s Association (VPA) requires Hazen to have no less than two administrators on property for every match. They did not meet the requirement, resulting in the forfeit. First year Hazen athletic director Jared Cushing views this as a problem that has greatly improved over the last few matches.

“We had 25% of all yellow and red cards issued in all soccer matches through the first six games in the entire state of Vermont…it was a problem. The team has not had a single card issued since the action was taken by the VPA,” said Cushing.

The Wildcats will welcome a powerhouse Stowe team to Hudson Fields on Wednesday and will end the week with a road trip to Lake Region on Friday.