After first loss, Hudson boys soccer smashes Brecksville

Michael Leonard
Kent Weeklies
Hudson captain Peter Strawbridge runs by a Lake defender during a game earlier this season. Strawbridge had a goal and an assist in Hudson's 7-1 win at Brecksville-Broadview Heights Sept. 8.

Hudson boys soccer had to deal with two swarms of Bees last week.

After losing its first game of season at Medina, it was the Explorers who ended up buzzing back vs. Brecksville-Broadview Heights.

Hudson lost a well-played game 1-0 at Medina Community Stadium Sept. 4, but came back with a 7-1 rout at Brecksville Sept. 8.

The Explorers moved to 3-1 overall and 2-0 in the Suburban League National Conference.

Hudson coach Steve Knapp said Medina — the 2018 Division I state champions — provided an excellent test for the Explorers.

"They were very good. It was a fun game," Knapp said. "They're strong at every position and very skilled."

Knapp noted the game was fairly even as Medina ended with a slight edge in shots on goal (7-4) and corner kicks (4-3).

The Bees got the lone goal in the contest in the 60th minute on a corner kick. Medina's Braden Macauda sent a ball to the back post, where Cole Werthmuller headed it home.

Knapp noted despite the loss, there were mostly positives to come out of the game.

"It showed that we have a lot of work to do to reach our potential, but it also showed that we can play with anyone," Knapp said. "It was one of the fastest games I've seen. We saw a lot of good things and and lot of things that we can improve above, which is what you want to see against a team like Medina."

"It kind of went in waves," Knapp added. "Medina controlled the first 15 minutes and then we took over the next 15. It was pretty even going all the way through the second half."

"Coming in waves" would be a good way to describe the Explorers' offense against Brecksville as the Explorers finished with a 12-3 edge in shots on goal and a 6-1 edge in corner kicks.

"We finished chances, which was good," Knapp said. "I think he's got quite a young team. They don't have much varsity experience. They defended well, but they just made a couple of defensive errors and we were able to capitalize."

The rout was highlighted by hat trick from Hudson's Tyler Travis.

Travis opened in scoring in the sixth minute. Pete Strawbridge had penalty kick saves by Bees goalkeeper Nick Firestone, but Travis pounced on the rebound and put it home.

In 12th minute, Quinn Groves finished a great team goal for the Explores by putting home a pass from Ben Hallis.

"It was probably the prettiest goal of our season," Knapp said. "There were six or seven nice passes before the goal. It was a really nice build up."

A few minutes later, however, Brecksville got an ugly goal to make it 2-1. Off a throw-in and scramble in the box, the Bees' Scott DiMassa pounded the ball in.

However, Groves was able to restore Hudson's two-goal lead in the 32nd minute as he turned in a nice cross from Luke Imes, making 3-1 at halftime.

"It was good to get that goal right before the half," Knapp said. "We were trying to play too creative and tricky. In the second half, we just did the simple things and had a lot more time on the ball."

Four minutes into the second half, Strawbridge made it 4-1 as he turned a nice cross from Caleb Junko into the net.

Travis then got his second goal in the 50th minute after what Knapp called another beautiful set up. A through ball from Ben Hopkins allowed Travis go run in one-on-one against the keeper and put it home.

Knapp emptied his bench from there, but the goals kept coming. After Hudson's Asher Chluda was fouled in the box in the 60th minute, Chluda took the penalty kick himself and scored his first varisty goal.

Travis then completed his hat trick and the scoring in the 70th minute with a nice individual effort.

Hudson goalkeeper Stephen Yerian had two saves in the first half, while Matt Kamisky had one in the second half. Firestone finished with five saves for the Bees.

Hudson was set to host its Senior Day Sept. 12 at 3 p.m. vs. Berea Midpark. The Explorers return to National Conference play Sept. 15 at Nordonia 7 p.m.