Windsor tops Rebels 5-3 in Townshend


TOWNSHEND >> Scorekeeper Tammy Claussen had her youngest son buy a couple bottles of water at the beginning of Tuesday's varsity boys soccer match.

The H2O was meant for the two referees, but dousing Dylan Hodgdon with it wouldn't have been a bad idea.

The freshman striker was on fire, tallying twice and setting up another in a six-minute span to help Windsor to a 5-3 victory over host Leland & Gray.

"They're a scrappy team that works really hard. They earn every goal that they get. They are a veteran team," said Rebels coach Chris Barton of the YellowJackets.

On the beautiful 60-degree afternoon, the home team passed very well right out of the gate. The ball went from Nathan Claussen to Bryce Karg to Pat McDonald to Caleb Thibault and back to McDonald, whose shot drifted just wide.

Windsor would then begin peppering goalie Gaige Astley. Brandon Tillman scored on a breakaway 9:17 in to give the visitors a 1-0 lead, before Cam O'Brien had a rebound chance, Tillman unloaded while attacking along the right side, and Adam Stapleton's header missed upstairs.

McDonald answered midway through the half on a penalty kick to deadlock the score and O'Brien would bury a shot nine minutes later to put Windsor in front again. And then came a play that had visiting coach Andy Tufts wanting to throw his challenge flag.

Windsor's Jacob Curtis stole the ball away from a defender and dribbled toward Astley as the final seconds of the first half ticked away. He would drive a shot between the posts, but the refs ruled that the ball didn't go in before the horn had sounded.

The Yellowjackets still led 2-1 at the break.

Leland & Gray's back line of Nick Fontaine, Lucas Newton, Willie Bush and Thibault kept the pressure off of Astley for the first seven minutes of the second half, but Hodgdon would then take over.

The freshman striker shook Bush on the left wing and drilled a shot into the back of the net, bent a free kick from long range that allowed Vincent Moeykens to tap home a rebound, and then scored on a run along the right side, all in a six-minute span. McDonald also tallied during that time.

Trailing 5-2, the Rebels continued attacking down the stretch. Clayton Sanderson pushed a shot wide left, McDonald was robbed by Ryan "Sauce" Saucier, and Karg capped the scoring by delivering on a run up the gut.

"At times we played well. We didn't give up," noted coach Barton. "We've been close against every good team we've played. We just need to work on our communication and our toughness."

Windsor improved to 3-7-1 with the victory. The 2-7-2 Rebels will host Arlington on Friday.


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