Hot Hanover Boys Soccer Hosts Playoff Opener
Winners of ten straight games, the Hanover High School boys soccer team opens tournament play on Wednesday with a home match against Nashua North at 6:00 p.m. at the high school's Merriman-Branch Field.
After heavy graduation losses and injuries to key players, the Marauders got off to a slow start this season, with a record of 2-4 after their first six games. The young Hanover squad learned their lessons well, however, and reeled off 10 straight victories to finish the regular season with a record of 12-4, good enough for a fourth place tie in the NHIAA standings.
The Marauders, seeded 5th in the Division One playoffs, will be hosting 12th-seeded Nashua North, a squad the Marauders defeated 5-0 during the regular season. Hanover's offense, which scored more goals than any other team in Division One, is led by sophomore Charlie Adams, junior Liam Collins, and senior Captain Henry Kahl. Adams leads the team in scoring with 11 goals and 12 assists, the second straight year that he has led the team. Collins has 11 goals and 8 assists, and Kahl has 5 goals and 12 assists.
Hanover's defense has solidified as the season has progressed, and has recorded seven shutouts in the last ten games. Goalkeepers Hans Williams and Joey Perras have split time in the net for the Marauders, who have received outstanding play from defenders Ben Parrado, Gary Li, Matty Gardner, Noah Pikielny and Kyle Doucette.
Senior midfielders Sam Pych and Earl Barrowes have been the key to Hanover's success with their play at midfield. Pych, a co-Captain, missed the first six games of the season with an injury, and his return to the lineup has been a significant factor in sparking the Marauder win streak.
If Hanover beats Nashua North, they will advance to a Saturday quarterfinal game against the winner of the match between Keene and 4th-seeded Pinkerton Academy.