Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Soccer Players Honored at Four-Team Celebration

All four of Hanover's Marauder soccer teams celebrated their seasons in style Monday evening.  Following the Infamous Dessert Buffet, each of the four teams took a few well-chosen moments to introduce their players to the overflow crowd and announce team honors.  Each of the four coaches was able to honor the ten minute limit, more or less, and after a few false starts the musical conclusion hit an absolute high note with two original Hans Williams numbers, performed superbly by the senior singer/songwriter/guitar player/goalkeeper.  As advertised, the celebration concluded prior to the 8:00 p.m. witching hour.  Thanks to all of the parents for supporting your sons in so many ways this season.

Hanover High School
Soccer Awards 2018

JV2 Awards

MVP- Matthew Alibozak
Sportsmanship – Aidan Tomlin
Golden Boot- Max Patyk-Finkel
X- Factor Award- Mark Ralston-Daniels
Coaches Award- Matt Fenner
Rookie Award -  Theodore Ruth
Defensive Player Award- Noah Phipps
Most Improved- Aidan Peterson

JV1 Awards

Golden Boot: Henry Aspinwall
Best Goal: Anthony Maynes
Most Improved: CJ Wheelen
Sportsmanship Award: Tom Lyons
Coaches Award: AJ Ristino
Most Valuable: Eric Ringer

Freshman Awards

Golden Boot - Eric Tysinger 
Playmaker of the year - Jacob Kubik-Pauw 
Most Improved - Mason Gantrish 
Defensive POTY - Jackson Fisher
Two-way POTY - Connor Hamlin
Goal of the year - Jack Ross
Coaches Award - Palmer Okai

Varsity Awards

NHSCA All State

First Team -  Charlie Adams, Kyle Doucette
Second Team - Christo Dragnev
Honorable Mention - Liam Collins, Matty Gardner

United Soccer Coaches All-Region

All New England -  Charlie Adams

Lions Twin State Cup All Star Team

Liam Collins, Christo Dragnev

Division One Senior Game

Dillon Bradley, Liam Collins

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Varsity and JV 1 Meeting Friday

There will be a mandatory meeting for all Varsity and JV1 players in the Library after school on Friday.  All players should bring a Chrome book or laptop.  JV1 players will complete the survey and be free to go after 15 minutes.  Varsity players will stay until 3:37.  If possible, players should bring game and practice uniforms:  cleaned, folded, bagged and labelled.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Central Beats Marauders 4-0 in NHIAA Semifinals

Hanover's season ended on Wednesday with a 4-0 defeat at the hands of a very strong Manchester Central team.  The Marauders played well, and were withing striking distance well into the second half, trailing 1-0 after an early first half goal.  Two quick Central scores in the 54th and 55th minutes poured cold water on Hanover's hopes, although they kept battling to the end.  Central, now 18-1, will advance to the finals to face Bedford, 2-0 winners over Concord and also 18-1. The loss was a downer for a Marauder team that harbored higher hopes, but it will do little to diminish the luster of a 15-4 season full of highlights.  The Marauders grew as a team, won a number of exciting and well-played games and developed a closeness and chemistry that were second to none.  The tears at the end of match were about the loss, sure, but were more accurately because the end of the season by definition breaks up the team.

Kicking off on under bright, sunny skies, the Marauders and Little Green spent the first ten minutes feeling each other out at midfield, although both Rahul Drupka and the wonderfully talented Josue Assantha were able to leave calling cards, ripping shots from outside the 18 that zoomed just wide of the left post.  Soon, the clouds gathered, figuratively and literally.  Just 13 minutes into the match, two small breakdowns on the left side of the Hanover defense gave Central the penetration needed to force a third, more telling missed tackle, and this time Drupka had the time and space to rip a shot past Hans Williams for a 1-0 lead.

Crucially, Hanover responded well to this setback, and avoided the fate which had befallen so many of Central's opponents, letting the Little Green break the game open.  The Marauders doubled down on defense, and although they were unable to muster much in the way of offense against the middle of a Central defense headed by the imposing Thamba Mbungu (rumored to be a bit older than 22).
The match became more of a typical playoff match, with both teams playing for either a mistake or a moment of brilliance.  There were no mistakes, but with five minutes to play on the half there was a moment of sheer brilliance.  Charlie Adams took the ball at midfield and send a pass down the right flank to a streaking Amame Matsuoka.  Matsuoka beat Silva Matimano to the baseline and ripped a cross across the face of the goal to David Stoffel, who had anticipated the play and made a great run of his own, meeting the ball beyond the far post and hitting a first-time pass to Liam Collins near the top of the box.  Collins hit a wonderful one-touch shot of his own.  Somehow, Arkan Traore scrambled back in time to get just a piece of the shot, deflecting it out for a corner.  Eli Stack got a decent look at the end of Collins' suusequent corner kick. Hanover had a lifeline.  They had shown themselves and everyone else at Bill Ball stadium that they could get back in the game.

Trailing 1-0 at the half, the Marauders were confident that they could continue the momentum from the first half.  For the first ten minutes, everything went exactly as they hoped.  The Hanover defense kept a lid on the dangerous Central front six, and Charlie Adams shook loose for a shot from the top of the 18 that forced Hayden Walker to make a diving save. This was what they hoped.

Just like that, Central struck like a serpent.  Hanover started an attack up the right side, and lost the ball at midfield with a defender out of place.  That's all a great team like Central needs.  Two quick passes later, and Samuel Assantha, who will be around for two years to haunt Hanover after older brother Josue graduates, fed the ball to Drupka for another unerring ripper.  With the score 2-0, Central did what they have done all year, and grabbed a third goal within a minute when a long ball up the middle landed in no man's land between Dillon Bradley and Hans Williams.  Suddenly, Samuel Assantha was there first, and his opportunistic goal gave the Little Green a 3-0 lead.

Hanover had 20 minutes to play, and they didn't give up.  Liam Collins and Charlie Adams continued to probe the Central defense tirelessly.  Defenders  Noah Pikielny and Gary Li showed off both Hanover's depth and their resolve to get the Marauders back in the game.  Patrick Osborn was relentless up front, nearly getting on the end of a great Adams through ball that resulted in the ball being cleared off the goal line.  Both Osborn and Adams had successive close calls at close range following a Collins corner with five minutes to play.  Central, understandably, kept their starter in the match, and shortly afterwards Josue Assanthe notched Central's fourth goal.  Insult added to injury.  Wait.  More insult/injury.  Charlie Adams was tripped on the box, clearly, and the game just kinda went on.  The whole team had been practicing penalties, too.  Chances are a wild-eyed and GU-deprived Colm Seigne would have stepped up for that one.  Or maybe the incredibly-deserving Gary Li.  But no, the Marauders ran out of time,  and sadly, unhappily, their great season was over.

There will be ample time for celebrating the season, beginning on November 12 at the all-team gala. For now, the Marauders will lick their wounds, file their college applications by midnight, wash their uniforms, complete their school assignments, and ease into that dark time with no more soccer.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Tuesday and Wednesday Soccer Schedule

HHS Tuesday and Wednesday Soccer Schedule, October 30-31

Tuesday, October 30

JV1 Soccer Team Meeting - HHS Library                                  3:00 p.m.
Bring laptops or chrome books.  Bring remaining uniforms

Varsity Training - HHS Turf                                                        3:15 - 5:00 p.m.

Wednesday, October 31

Varsity Game vs. Manchester Central at Exeter -  1:00 dismissal      4:00 p.m.

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Marauders Beat Salem 2-1; Head to Semifinals Wednesday

                  Junior defender Judd Alexander scored his first career goal with less than three minutes to play in regulation to give the Hanover boys a 2-1 victory over upstart Salem.  The Marauders had taken a 1-0 30 minutes into the match on a goal by sophomore Matty Gardner, but the Blue Devils tied the match with five minutes to play, setting the stage for Alexander’s heroics.

                  The win sends Hanover, now 15-3 on the season, to the NHIAA Division One semifinals on       Wednesday against Manchester Central at Exeter at 4:00.  The Marauders lost 1-0 to Central (17-1) earlier in the season.

                  Hanover dominated play in the first half , and put the ball into the net on a free kick eight minutes into the match, only to have the play ruled offsides.  Four minutes later, Dillon Bradley got his head on the ball in close on a free kick from Liam Collins, but the ball was headed off the line by a defender. They came closest to scoring 15 minutes into the match on a spectacular volley by Liam Collins, only to have Salem goalkeeper Anthony Bellomo make an equally spectacular save to keep the match scoreless.  The Hanover defense did an exceptional job limiting the Blue Devils to two shots in the entire half, long drives that were easily handled by Hans Williams.

hhh           The Marauders got on the board at 30:38 when Charlie Adams, fouled several times to this point, was again clumsily fouled outside the Salem penalty area.  Adams quickly placed the ball and sent pass to Gardner, who made a genius run into space and went in along on goal, flicking the ball past an onrushing Bellomo into the corner for his fourth goal in as many games.  Hungry for more, the Marauders came close when a Gardner header was blocked at the far post, and when Bellomo made a nice save on Amane Matsuoka after a great run from the wing put him on the end of a Liam Collins pass.

                  The Marauders came close several times in the second half.  Bellomo made a nice diving save on a Charlie Adams free kick in the 48th minute for a corner, and two minutes made a ridiculous diving save to deny another drive by Collins.  Seven  minutes later super subs Eli Stack and Amane Matsuoka made their presence felt yet again, as Matsouka broke free on the right flank and sent a cross to Stack that just missed connecting.  Salem, playing without their top striker, benched for disciplinary reasons, was nevertheless not going away.  With 18 minutes remaining midfielder Kyle Chute got loose at the top of the box and ripped a low drive that just missed the left post.  It was a harbinger of things to come.

                  Matsuoka was back in business  in the 65th minute, hitting a hard shot from a bad angle that creted a juicy rebound.   Having knocked on the door by failed to add to the lead, the Marauders paid the price with less than five minutes left to play. Salem tied the score on one of their few forays into the Hanover end when a cross into the box was cleared to the feet of junior Brian English, who buried a hard, accurate shot into the lower left corner.

                  Hanover went ahead for good just two minutes later, calmly working the ball around in the Salem end and earning a free kick  30 yards out.  Liam Collins lifted a cross into the penalty area, and the ball was cleared to Alexander, who made no mistake, hitting a shot that deflected off a defender's foot and looped over Bellomo and into the goal, setting of a wild and well-deserved celebration.  The Marauders calmly saw the match off in the final two minutes, and punched their ticket to the Final Four at Bill Ball Stadium.

                  The Marauders, winners of nine games in a row, will play Manchester Central at 4:00 on Wednesday in Exeter, the scene of a frustrating loss earlier this year, one that triggered their current run of success.  The other semifinal will pit top-seeded Bedford against defending champion Concord, the 4th seed.  Bedford’s only loss was a 2-1 decision to Hanover earlier in the year.

            “This was one of the best games of the year for us,” commented Hanover Coach Rob Grabill.  “We kept our composure after giving up that late tying goal, and didn’t rush things as time was winding down. Our patience rally paid off for us all afternoon.  We’re excited to be going back to the semifinals for the first time in three years.  The top four seeds are all there, and it should be pretty entertaining."

Friday, October 26, 2018

Varsity Playoff Game Moved to Sunday at 2:00

The Marauder Varsity playoff game with Salem scheduled for Saturday at 2:00 has been moved to Sunday at 2:00 at the high school.  See you then!

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Friday and Saturday Schedule


JV2 Meeting after school in the Library.  Bring chrome book or laptop

Varsity practice on the HHS turf 3:30 - 5:00.  Be on time and ready to go at 3:30 sharp.

Last chance to bring in Uniforms to the Gym during Activity period.  We will bill parents for missing uniforms beginning Monday.


Varsity Playoff Game vs. Salem at 2:00.  Locker room open for dressing at 12:45.  Players on the field no later than 1:15.