Hudson's girls' soccer team has posted six straight shutouts to improve to 16-2 overall, 13-0 and in first place in the Big Rivers Conference. So what do they have to show for it? A No. 4 seed in its 17-team WIAA Division 1 Sectional bracket.
This, despite the fact the Raiders beat two sectional opponents at the D.C. Everest Quad over the weekend. Hudson shut out Stevens Point 7-0 Friday, May 17, before the sectional was seeded, then after receiving the No. 4 seed they went out and blanked Appleton West 2-0 Saturday, May 18. Stevens Point ended up getting the No. 13 seed and will open regional play at Hudson Tuesday, May 28, while Appleton West is seeded No. 8. Kimberly and Bay Port earned the top two seeds while D.C. Everest is No. 3.
Last Friday the Raiders faced Stevens Point, the third place team in the Wisconsin Valley Conference behind D.C. Everest and Wisconsin Rapids, in a game with seeding implications and struck just 20 seconds in when Sydney Spencer picked off a keeper pass and sent it to Stella Duffee, who slotted it home. By halftime it was 5-0 and at the end Duffee had four goals and two assists, Spencer had two goals and two assists and Ella Young had one of each.
"I thought this game would get us seeded above D.C. Everest, as they played Point twice and won by three both times, coupled with the fact we beat them 1-0 during the season," Raider coach Steve Sollom said. "But apparently not."
Saturday against Appleton West of the Fox Valley Association, which includes top-seeded Kimberly, Duffee found Spencer for a breakaway goal 10 minutes in and assisted on a goal by Young in the 35th minute as the Raiders won 2-0 in a weather-shortened game.
"We only played 60 minutes, but it was unfortunate we had to seed the section before playing them because we would have had a game with their conference to reference," Sollom noted. "The conditions were tough and we really didn't play particularly well, but we got another shutout which is what we've been focusing on."
It was the Raiders sixth straight shutout and 13th in 18 games this season.
The third shutout during the recent string came in a 3-0 victory over Menomonie on Senior Night Thursday, May 16, that kept them undefeated in BRC play at 13-0.
All 10 Raider seniors started the game and senior Cam Masini opened the scoring in the first minute off a cross from Duffee. Senior Marly Johnston scored out front in the ninth minute before sophomore Duffee closed the scoring in the 28th minute.
The Raiders have three BRC games left on their regular season schedule-Tuesday, May 21, at Rice Lake, Thursday, May 23, at home against Eau Claire Memorial, and a make-up game Friday, April 24, at home against Eau Claire North. They need to win at least two of their final three games to clinch sole possession of the BRC title.