MACEDONIA — They've certainly been more competitive in recent years.
But the Knights have dealt with an extremely harsh reality that has frustrated them for what seems like forever.
The Explorers have their number on the pitch.
Like recent contests, Nordonia hung tough with its longtime conference rival.
In the end, though, Hudson, as always, had just a bit more in its arsenal.
The struggling Explorers got back on track after earning a 3-0 victory over the host Knights in a Suburban League National Conference showdown Tuesday evening at Boliantz Stadium in Macedonia.
Hudson, which ended a three-game losing streak, improved to 2-4 overall and 1-1 in the National Conference. Nordonia, which has never beaten the Explorers in its history, dropped to 3-2-1 and 0-2 in the conference.
It wasn't a work of art by either team as the players from both sides had to endure extremely hot temperatures.
The game was decided in a 10-minute span when Hudson scored three goals in the second half.
"We didn't finish our chances early," Explorers head coach Steve Knapp said. "We were pressing and weren't very patient.
"In the second half, we were a lot more patient. Once we got that first goal, we were able to take a breath."
Hudson got its first goal nearly 10 minutes into the second half.
Peyton Koscho found Sean Durkin, who took a couple of dribbles and found the net from the left side of the field.
Nearly five minutes later, the Explorers struck again.
Ryan Sarkisian got the ball on a throw-in by Joshua Rosenzweig and finished on a breakaway.
Jarrett Widdoes put the finishing touches on the win when he headed a cross from Rosenzweig with little more than 21 minutes remaining.
"A game like this is a jump over a ledge that we haven't been able to get over," Knights head coach Jason Stepp said. "We have never beaten Hudson, just like quite a few teams in our conference. We need one of these to get over the hump.
"We shared possession for most of the game, but our defensive third and attacking third were still a little too shaky. We were strong in the middle third."
Hudson dictated play most of the way, but Nordonia's defense, led by Mark Kaczmarek, managed to turn away several scoring opportunities in the first half.
Unfortunately, it was only a matter of time before the Explorers broke down their barrier and put the game out of reach.
"We emptied the bench in the last 25 minutes and played kids who deserved to play," Knapp said. "We've had a tendency to not make that extra pass or we make that one pass too quick. We were able to find the ball and go more direct in the second half."
Hudson had a 5-1 advantage in shots on goal and a 4-1 edge in corner kicks.
Knights goalkeeper Zack Westbrooks made three saves between the pipes. Explorers goalie Tyler Venti made one save before being replaced by Tommy Kennedy midway through the second half.
The Knights are still a long way from solving their nemesis, but they are building something that could be special for years to come, according to Stepp.
"This is the first year we have two JV [junior varsity] programs," he said. "Eight of our 11 starters on the JV A team are freshmen."