Harwood 1, Milton 0: On September 27, the Harwood field hockey team traveled away to play against Milton in what would result as a Highlander victory with a lone goal by junior Abby Scharges winning the match.
Previously, the girls’ team had been coming off a 0-6-1 season. Hungry for their first victory, Scharges was there to find the back of the net with help from her linemates.
“We had good passing and carrying up the field in transition from defense to offense,” commented head coach Katie Alexander.
After coming off a tough loss early in the week to St. Johnsbury, 0-1, Harwood used their practice time to work on the basics in order to prepare against Milton.
“Goalies worked on clearing the ball and taking the initiative to clear the ball out wide, really owning the goaltender’s space,” said assistant coach Chelsea Delphia. Sophomore Kaylee Cameron was the lone goaltender in net for the Highlanders and kept shots out of the net to earn her second shutout of the season.
“It’s been awesome to watch Kaylee improve from the start of the season; her playing has definitely improved; it was nice to get our first win under our belt and see all of the girls hard work pay off in a win,” said Delphia.
The Highlanders will continue to work on dribbling and dodging to prepare for their next match against Lyndon Institute on October 3, at home starting at 4 p.m.
Harwood 5, North Country 1: On September 25, Harwood boys’ varsity traveled to play against North Country in a game that would propel the Highlanders forward in their winning season.
North Country was the first to strike, scoring in the opening minutes. Harwood fought back minutes later with a goal from senior Charlie Zschau with an assist from fellow teammate Will Lapointe.
In the 20th minute of the game Lapointe scored again with an assist from Hayden Adams, minutes later Jack Birmingham assisted senior Markus Baird.
In the second half, Lapointe scored his third goal unassisted in the 68th minute and then one more assisted by Hayden Adams in the 72nd.
Harwood goaltenders Max Hill and Ollie Hammond both played in the match for a combined total of two saves but were tested in their own crease due to slippery conditions.
“We have leaders all over the field. Will Lapointe has 10 goals in four games, but he wouldn't have even half of those without the improved play from our midfield and outside backs. Our team plays an entertaining style that creates a lot of chances and utilizes our players' best strengths. Will is our striker and has done a great job converting his chances especially the last few games. But he has also distributed well and creates spaces for other guys to attack,” said head coach Joe Yalicki.
At this point in the season, Yalicki said the boys’ soccer team has a target on their back and how his team is able to set season goals as well as focusing on the individual games as they come.
Harwood 5, Montpelier 0: Harwood traveled away to face neighboring rival Montpelier High School. Hayden Adams passed to Will Lapointe in the 13th minute of the game to knock in the first goal in what would be a runaway game for the Highlanders.
Minutes after the first goal, Duncan Weinman crossed a ball to Hayden Adams who got one past Montpelier’s goaltender in the 16th minute.
“In most games, we settle in and start to wear teams down. I want my players to have a high level of fitness, consistent ability to deliver dangerous passes, smart positioning off of the ball, raw speed, and/or a high work rate,” said coach Yalicki.
Yalicki’s team did not disappoint, as minutes later Will Laptointe assisted Ely Kalkstein in the 23rd minute of the game making it 3-0. Charlie Zschau assisted Will Lapointe before the half ended.
In the second half it was Wyatt Adams who had possession and got it past defensive pairs and goalie for an unassisted goal. Max Hill and Ollie Hammond combined for two saves.
When asked if there were any standout plays against Montpelier, Yalicki commented, “Wyatt's goal in the second half. He won a ball just inside of the center circle and two touches later ripped a low hard shot that skimmed into the side net from about 27 yards out. He told me after he knew it was going in the second he hit it.”
Boys’ soccer is now 6-0 and will be playing GMVS on Friday, October 5.
Harwood 3, Stowe 2: On September 27, the Harwood varsity girls’ soccer team faced off against neighboring rivals Stowe in a close game that would have Harwood taking the overtime victory to the bank.
In the first half, senior Hazel Macmillan scored a lone goal for Harwood that would get the fire started. Both teams played defense well, moving the ball in a back and forth possession game.
Harwood wouldn’t score again until the second half when freshman standout Tanum Nelson, who has had a strong season thus far for the Highlanders found the back of the net with support from fellow teammates.
The game was tied 2-2 and went into a sudden death overtime that had the crowd in a high anticipation. In the end it would be Harwood who brought the ball up the field and senior leader Zoe Buffam who zigged zagged through defense to score the game winner.
Head coach Mike Vasseur commented on the overtime goal, “The last goal that Zoe scored was a gutsy goal, that showed we wanted the game.”
When asked was Vasseur took away from the game, he commented, “We had more drive to the goal and did not back down.” This week in practices the team will be working on using the field more, length and width wise, effectively and playing on both sides.
Vasseur commented that the team’s energy is growing as the season progresses due to the high anticipation for upcoming playoffs.
Harwood 5 Lyndon 0: After coming off a close game victory against Stowe, Harwood was on the road again to play Lyndon Institute on September 29.
Senior Eleanor Reilly scored in the first half alongside Tanum Nelson, as Harwood would take and early lead with no indication of putting the brakes on anytime soon.
Nelson scored her second goal in the second half, followed by Anna Jamieson and Zoe Buffum, The score ending up 5-0 with Harwood gaining another tally in the win column and a shutout to boot.
Coach Vasseur was pleased with the results and commented that the team was able to give all 25 players field time. The communication on the field, Vassuer commented, was the best ball movement he had seen from his team all season.
The girls were set to play on October 2, at home against Lake Region but the game was canceled due to weather conditions. There is no word yet if the game will be rescheduled. The girls’ team will play next on the road against North Country on October 5.