The Hudson United Pirates soccer squad has enjoyed great success this season, and currently sits near the top of the state rankings for Class 2A. The Pirates are ranked #3 in the latest poll, and have a nearly unblemished record of 15-1.
On April 25th, the team kicked things off with an 8-2 win over South Tama. The Pirates had a slow start but once the goals began they continued to come. Goals came from Hunter Zempel (6). Tyler Way (1), Cameron Wright (1). Assists were recorded from Stone Allen (1), Trevor Rottinghaus (1), Shawn Drinovsky (1). Goalkeeper Tyler Krogh recorded 3 saves and 2 goals against.
The next night the Pirates traveled to Decorah. With the first game of 80-degree weather, the Pirates needed to adjust to the heat. In the twelfth minute, Hunter Zempel began to the pace. The Pirates scored three more times in the game. Goals came from Tyler Way (1), and Cameron Wright (1). Assists were recorded by Hunter Zempel (2) and Cameron Wright (1). Goalkeeper Tyler Krogh recorded 9 saves and 1 goal against.
On the road again, the Pirates took on a new opponent on their schedule. The Mustangs played a high pressure game. The Pirates found themselves at halftime down 0-1. In the fourth minute of the second half, Pirate defender Connor Wrage came up to help the attack from a corner kick. The kick landed in front of the goal area, Wrage touched a rebounded ball and placed the ball low and near post. The goals continued to come. Hunter Zempel (2) and Cameron Wright (1). One assist was recorded from Zempel. Goal Keeper Tyler Krogh recorded 8 saves and 2 goals against.
On May 3rd, the Pirates defeated Grinnell 1-0. The memory of Grinnell knocking the United Pirates out for the chance to go state last year, was still extremely present when the Pirates stepped onto the pitch. Grinnell attacked from the middle and the flanks, the Pirates defensive unit played as they have all season but added an extra amount of determination into this very important game. The goal keeper and the six defensive players are the heart of the teams unity. They are the ones who connect with each other and with flawless play they know how to perform transitional soccer. They begin the counter attack and with their recovery runs get behind the ball and quickly get into their defensive shape. They communicate with each other so they always know who has pressure, cover, and balance. These players makeup the foundation for the team's success thus far this season. The players are: Keeper Tyler Krogh, Left back Stone Allen, Center backs Chase Kruckemeyer and Connor Wrage and Right Back Aaron Marcellus along with the connecting defensive mids Trevor Rottinghaus and Brady Petersen. Wrage recorded the only goal of the game as he headed the ball in the back of the net which came from a corner kick taken by Rottinghaus who placed a perfect ball to Wrage. Keeper Krogh recorded four saves and zero goals against. It is Krogh's 7th shutout of the season.
The United Pirates squad encountered some challenging obstacles during the Waverly Tournament on May 5th. By the end of the day, the Pirates won two games and experienced their first loss of the season.
In a 1-0 win over Waverly, Cameron Wright followed a rebounded ball and placed a high far post driven shot in the back of the minute. Tyler Krogh recorded 6 saves and 0 goals against. It is his 8th shutout of the season.
The following game was the only loss for the team this season. Spencer came to the pitch ready to play high pressure soccer. And in the first minute of the second half the Pirates got caught with an error and the ball landed on the foot of the Spencer attacker who quickly took a touch past the defender and hit the ball in the far low post. This ended up being the only goal of the game. Tyler Krogh recorded 7 saves and 1 goal against.
The last game of the day was a test to the Pirates on regrouping from the loss, which they did, winning 2-0.
The team was back in action on Monday, May 7th at Reinbeck. Thursday, May 10th was Senior Night with the game being played at home. There is a game, also at home, on Friday at 6:15 p.m., followed by the season finale on Thursday, May 17, at 5 p.m. against Independence.
Substate brackets will be released this week and will be included in next week's issue of the Dysart Reporter if available.