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Booters open with tie, win

Hudson senior midfielder John Tjornehoj (20) battles a Menomonie player for control of the ball in the Raider soccer team's 5-0 win over the Indians Thursday in Menomonie. Tjornehoj had two goals and an assist in the win. Photo by Keith Crowley

The defending Big Rivers Conference champion Raider boys' soccer team opened the 2009 season by playing to a 1-1 tie at Eau Claire Memorial last Tuesday before blanking Menomonie, 5-0, on the road Thursday.

After hosting River Falls Tuesday night, Sept. 1, the Raiders will visit Rice Lake Thursday, Sept. 3 and host Eastview (Minn.) in a nonconference game Saturday, Sept. 5 at 11 a.m.

Last Tuesday at Eau Claire Memorial, Hudson salvaged a 1-1 tie when Nick Lund sent a second half cross to Chris Berglund, and Berglund redirected a header into the net.

Hudson missed a golden opportunity to jump on the Old Abes early when John Tjornehoj sent Lund on a breakaway three minutes into the game. Lund dribbled around the ECM goalkeeper but his shot sailed high over the net.

"After Nick Lund's breakaway three minutes in we struggled through the first half due to high pressure from Memorial," Raider head coach Chuck Bublitz said. "After halftime we picked up our intensity and the quality of our play to earn the equalizing goal."

Jimmy Setzer earned the team's "Man of the Match" award for making three big saves to keep the score tied.

Thursday at Menomonie, Tjornehoj had two goals and an assist and Lars Bircht stepped in for an injured Luke Jepperson to help anchor a strong defense alongside Ben Markowski in a 5-0 Raider win.

"We again struggled in the first half, this time due to a committed Menomonie defensive effort," Bublitz said. "We continually tried to force the ball into their defense. Once we broke through in the 24th minute with John Tjornehoj's goal their defense broke down and we were able to put two more in before halftime."

Tjornehoj's first goal was assisted by David Nettelton. Lund scored at the 35 minute mark, assisted by Mackenzie Lund, before Tjornehoj's second goal of the game a minute later gave the Raiders a 3-0 halftime lead.

Nettelton added an unassisted goal in the 57th minute and Berglund finished off the scoring, assisted by Tjornehoj, with 15 minutes remaining.

Bublitz said he's looking forward t the team improving every game.

"I would like our boys to work hard at excelling every day, both as individuals and as a team, so that we can play our best soccer in October," he said.

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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