Hawk soccer squads eager for new season
HODGDON, Maine — The Hodgdon boys and girls varsity soccer teams both have high hopes for the newly-started fall sports season.
A pair of second-year coaches return to lead the Hawks this year as Jason Little will once again guide the varsity boys squad, while Amanda Stubbs mentors the varsity girls.
The Hodgdon boys are 1-1 on the year after beating Washburn in the season-opener Aug. 27, but falling to Central Aroostook 5-0 Wednesday, Aug. 29, at home. The Hawk girls are 0-2 thus far following losses to Washburn and Central Aroostook.
Numbers are certainly not an issue for either squad, as the boys team has 20 players on its roster, while the girls have one of their largest rosters in recent years with 14 players.
“We are excited about the year and what is in store for us,” coach Little said. “Our schedule includes some point worthy games that will be good for us. We took a big step last year making the playoffs and winning our prelim game. We hope to continue improving and hopefully make another step further.”
The Hawk boys finished 9-5-2 overall last season, which earned the team the No. 8 seed and a home playoff. Hodgdon beat No. 9 Easton 4-2 in the preliminary round. The Hawks then lost to No. 1 Bangor Christian 3-0.
Hodgdon lost several talented players from that squad due to graduation, including Wyatt Foster, Dylan Oliver, Bobby Ramsey and Nick Sherman.
“These four young men led our group last year, not just with their talent, but their attitude and leadership skills,” the coach said.
With so many new players this year, though, Hodgdon has much greater depth to its roster.
This year’s squad features seniors Tyler Cox, Jesse Frederick, Dylan Jurson, Hunter Muncey, Josh Palmer; juniors Aaron Brooker, Kyle Carver, Josh Foster, Lucas Ramsey, Dameon Sanders, Michael Sanders, Hunter Tapley and Seth Tapley; sophomores Codie Barton, Colton Folsom, Jeremiah Goff; and freshmen Sam Adams, Tim Fitzpatrick, Damin Harris, and Josh McGillicuddy.
“We feel that the team as a whole is very athletic and quick,” Little said. “We have lots of senior leadership and a deep team with even our younger players having the potential to make a big impact. We hope to continue improving on moving without the ball, passing, spreading the field, and communication.”
Hawk girls rebuilding
The Hodgdon girls squad is in more of a rebuilding mode after losing its entire starting defense, and several key offensive players, to graduation this past June.
“We are a young team this year with no seniors and only three juniors,” coach Stubbs said.
The girls roster features juniors Katherine Berube, Autumn Ganzel and Lauren McGillicuddy; sophomores Karlee Brisley, Emma Brown, Brea Carll, Emma Drew, Mikyla Howland, Erin Peters, Sabra Scott and Catherine Smallwood; and freshmen Kaelyn Lawlor, Delaney Little and Monique Polchies.
The group of juniors will be called upon to provide key veteran leadership. Ganzel will serve as the Hawks starting goalie for the second straight year, with Fitzpatrick serving as a halfback and Berube anchoring the defensive backfield.
Scott, Drew and Howland are likely to be the Hawks’ top scoring threats with their speed and nose for the goal.
The Hawks finished 7-6-1 a year ago, which earned the team the No. 7 seed in the Class D north standings. Hodgdon was upset by No. 10 Katahdin 4-1 in a home preliminary playoff.
“I expect this year to be more of a building year for this team, but I do think if we can come together early on in the season we have the potential to be competitive with almost any team on our schedule,” coach Stubbs said. “We are aiming for a postseason bid and would like to host a playoff game. We know we have things to work on and improve at, but I think if we can work out our defensive kinks and communicate well throughout the team we can definitely win some games.”