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Two blowouts move kickers to rematch at sectionals vs. Memorial

Josh Nanda holds off a defender while possessing the ball against Superior. Photo by Joe Winter

The Raider soccer team bided its time, but then poured it on at some junctures to win two regional games that eventually became blowouts.

"We got off to a fast start in regional play," said Coach Scott Masini, noting that the combined score of 14-1 in two regional games, against Superior and New Richmond, moved them to sectionals that start at home Thursday. They face Eau Claire Memorial.

Having gained the No. 1 seed, Hudson hosted Superior in the regional semifinal. Three years ago, under the same scenario, the Raiders were upset by Superior when Hudson was the No. 3 seed.

"Not taking anyone lightly, we pounced on them right away with two quick goals," Masini said. "Our level of play then dropped a bit, naturally. However we were quickly awakened while trying to clear a ball out of the back and Superior sniped one on us."

That quickly brought Superior back into the game at 2-1, but it didn't last. "Our players regrouped and wound up 5-1 at half before ending the rout at 9-1," Masini said.

With that win, Hudson hosted the regional final on Saturday versus New Richmond. "We really struggled against New Richmond the first time we played them, only winning 2-0, but it was much closer than that in the run of play," Masini said. "The Tigers came out with some intense pressure, our guys settled in."

Within minutes, Mackenzie Lund broke in on the goalie and narrowly missing the top of the goal. "We built again from the back and this time Nick Lund found David Nettleton in front of the net for a 1-0 lead," Masini said. Shortly after the assist, Nick Lund got a goal of his own.

"He broke in on the left side and chipped the keeper to make it 2-0. Although we dominated play, the score stood the same at half," Masini said. "The boys weren't satisfied and came out in the second half charged up."

Mackenzie Lund scored 29 seconds into the final period to break open the game. Nick Lund closed the scoring with two more second-half goals to produce the 5-0 result.

With the wins, the Raiders advance to sectionals vs. Eau Claire Memorial, which they beat in an overtime game last week. "We have the opportunity to host another exciting game; we split the season series so it will be a great game," Masini said. It is at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 30 at the Hudson Middle School field.

If Hudson wins, it will travel to Wausau to face the winner of a contest between Marshfield and Rhinelander for the right to go to state.