Bullets Edge Wildcats in First Round
by Ken Brown
FAIRFAX – BFA-Fairfax got their revenge on an early season loss to the Hazen Union boys’ soccer team last week with a first round win in the division III playoffs.
Luca Chayer buried a feed from Rowan Albee for the game-winner as the Bullets edged Hazen at home last Wednesday 2-1. Mathieu Braden broke through the Wildcat defense off the opening touch, giving the home team a 1-0 advantage 30 seconds into the match. Hazen regrouped and aggressive play drew a foul and a penalty kick that Jadon Baker calmly converted to knot things at 1-1. The Wildcat offense created chances, but were denied by Brayden Gillilan and the Bullet defense, who posted eight saves on the day. Chayer would get the last say, sending seventh seeded BFA-Fairfax into the quarterfinal round. It was the eighth win in the last nine matches for a Bullet team that got off to a slow start this season.
“The boys played a strong match against BFA. We went in knowing it would be a tough and physical match, which it very much was. We had several high notes, demonstrated with how well we possessed the ball, spread them out with good spacing, and displayed great sportsmanship. It was a tough match to lose, but in my opinion the guys still came out on top,” said head coach Allison Paradee.
Paradee will lose key seniors to graduation including, Tyler Rivard, Cody Trudeau, Jadon Baker, and Lincoln Michaud. They have been the anchors for the Wildcat defense and offense the last few years, but Paradee likes the promise she has seen in a core of young players who contributed this fall.
“My four senior captains will be big losses for our team. Jadon and Cody have been my top scorers the past two seasons, playing an aggressive, yet technical style of soccer. Lincoln and Tyler have demonstrated strong leadership on the field, communicating with their team throughout the game, and being able to lead and offer direct feedback in the moment. We’ll probably have a larger and younger team next season, but it will be a growing year. I’ll have some fantastic returning leaders in Daniel des Groseilliers, Gabe Michaud, Xavier Hill, and Eliot Rosendahl. I’ll be looking to some of our younger players such as Seville Murphy and Ari Jurkiewicz to develop a strong offensive line. Justin Montgomery, who I’ve played all over the field, will have an opportunity to use his athleticism and determination to help complete our defensive line. Morgan Michaud trained with Tyler all season and will be an asset to our team over the next three years in net,” said Paradee.
The Bullets fell to Stowe over the weekend 4-0 in the quarterfinal round, ending their season at 10-6. Hazen Union’s season ends at 5-9-1.