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Raiders stand on top of BRC soccer standings

Raider forward Allie Beaver (8) reacts after redirecting a pass from Katy Schulte into the net as Ashley Iverson (9) begins to celebrate early in the second half of the Raiders' 2-0 win over Eau Claire Memorial last Tuesday at the middle school field. Photo by Bob Burrows

Hudson against Eau Claire Memorial.

It was a game both Raider and Old Abes' fans had circled on their schedules since early in the season. And even though the two teams will meet again on the last day of the regular season, May 21 in Eau Claire, game No. 1 belongs to the Raiders.

Hudson scored two second-half goals, and keeper Tessa Bakken made four saves to lead the Raiders to a 2-0 win over the Old Abes last Tuesday at the middle school field.

Bakken needed just one save to record her fifth shutout of the season Thursday in a 4-0 win over Menomonie.

The two victories improved the Raiders' record to 8-1 overall, 6-1 and in sole possession of first place in the BRC. After traveling to River Falls (5-3, 4-3) Tuesday, May 5, and hosting Rice Lake Thursday, May 7, Hudson will get a taste of what soccer is like in the southeastern part of the state at the Brookfield Tournament over the weekend. Their first contest is Friday evening at 6 p.m.

Last Tuesday Hudson scored two second-half goals in the 2-0 win over the Old Abes, who dipped to 3-2-1 in conference play.

"Throughout the game I thought our midfielders and forwards moved the ball well, allowing us to control the tempo of the game," Raider head coach Allie Knutson said. "Overall, the girls were very happy with their win, and I think it was well deserved."

Hudson had the better opportunities in the first half but the game remained scoreless until the 44-minute mark Katy Schulte sent a cross from the right side in front to Allie Beaver, who left her feet to redirect the ball into the far, left corner and give the Raiders a 1-0 lead.

The Raiders made the final 2-0 on a goal by Schulte, assisted by Megan Claflin, with less than five minutes remaining.

"I thought we played very strong defensively, all over the field," Knutson said. "Our back four of Bri Elliott, Natalie Anderson, Katy Tantalean and Jen Millin did an exceptional job, as well as the rest of the team, putting pressure on the ball all over the field."

Thursday against Menomonie, Ashley Iverson had a goal and an assist, and Claflin, Paige Ommen and Megan Kelly each had a goal in the Raiders' 4-0 win. Abbie Beaudry also had an assist in the win.

The game was in stark contrast to the first time the two teams met, when Hudson escaped with a 2-1 overtime win in Menomonie.

"I was happy to see the girls shut them out on our home field," Knutson said.

The Raiders outshot the Indians, 11-1.

Bob Burrows
Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.
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