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Hawks strike early, often in 3-0 championship win over Bow

  • Hopkinton players greet their fans after beating Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton players greet their fans after beating Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton senior forward Doug Fleury charges past Bow senior defender Mitchell Blair during Hopkinton's victory over Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton senior forward Doug Fleury charges past Bow senior defender Mitchell Blair during Hopkinton's victory over Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Bow goalie Tim Bradley keeps the ball out of the net <br/>here, but Hopkinton put it in three times to claim the Division III title <br/>at Bill Ball Stadium in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Bow goalie Tim Bradley keeps the ball out of the net
    here, but Hopkinton put it in three times to claim the Division III title
    at Bill Ball Stadium in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.

    (WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton players greet their fans after beating Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton senior forward Doug Fleury charges past Bow senior defender Mitchell Blair during Hopkinton's victory over Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Bow goalie Tim Bradley keeps the ball out of the net <br/>here, but Hopkinton put it in three times to claim the Division III title <br/>at Bill Ball Stadium in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton beats Bow in the NHIAA Division III boys' soccer championship at Exeter High School in Exeter on Sunday, November 10, 2013.<br/><br/>(WILL PARSON / Monitor staff)

EXETER – There weren’t going to be any odd breaks, any strange bounces, or any other sort of unpredictable factors getting in the way of the Hopkinton boys’ soccer team and its relentless mission to prove itself as the best team in Division III this year.

Instead, the moment the Hawks had a chance, they removed every trace of doubt. The entire season for Hopkinton had been a tour de force, and the state final, even against the two-time defending champion, wasn’t going to be any different.

The top-seeded Hawks capped off an undefeated season by scoring twice in the first seven minutes and three times in the first half en route to a 3-0 victory over No. 2 Bow that gave them their first championship since winning four straight from 2006 to 2009.

“These guys knew who they wanted in the final,” said Coach Scott Zipke, whose team improved to 19-0-1 by beating a Falcons squad that was playing in its fourth straight title game. “They came out and showed it in the first five minutes, the first 20 minutes, they were just on fire.

“Once the playoffs started, it changed from trying to keep the undefeated season to going to get a little bit of revenge. And I think that showed in our first half.”

The revenge factor dates back to last year’s semifinal, when the second-seeded Hawks saw their season end in the semifinals on a penalty kick in overtime to the Falcons. It was a difficult way to lose a playoff game – but as it turned out, once the next fall began, it made for excellent motivation.

“I think that a lot of guys felt that their season ended earlier than it should have last year, right or wrong,” Zipke said. “They came out almost with a chip on their shoulder, and once they got to the playoffs, they didn’t want to go out in that manner again.”

There was no way that was going to be a possibility yesterday. Not with the way the Hawks attacked the Falcons (17-2-1) from the opening whistle. Hopkinton effortlessly took offensive control and struck quickly, taking a 1-0 lead when Zach Rouleau passed up to Doug Fleury for a goal 2:23 into the game. Fleury had to navigate around Bow keeper Tim Bradley, who charged forward to break up the play, but Fleury kept his balance and was rewarded with an open net to shoot into.

“Every time we’ve played Bow, we’ve always had a tough time starting,” Fleury said. “Tonight, we just kind of focused on starting fast, and getting what we needed to do done.”

The Hawks kept up the pressure and, with Fleury leading the way again, turned the hole the Falcons were in into a gorge. Fleury fired a corner kick toward the front of the net and found Rouleau, who went for a header. The redirect clanged off the crossbar, but senior Brian Hauschild was on hand to put in the rebound for a 2-0 lead only 6:33 into the contest.

“We just felt great,” Hauschild said. “When you get two goals in the first (seven) minutes, it’s just overwhelming. We just tried to keep it going.”

Plenty of time remained, but Falcons Coach George Pinkham knew his team was in critical condition at that point. Pinkham had dealt with facing a powerful offense before, as the Falcons beat an undefeated Belmont team, 1-0, in the final last year, and his advice to his players was the same for both games: Survive the barrage.

They did last year. They didn’t – or couldn’t – yesterday.

“They were quicker today, they were faster today, they were a better team by far,” he said. “We did everything we could do to try to stay with them. We couldn’t. They just dictated the game. By far, they were the champions today.”

The Hawks had already scored more goals than they had allowed in 18 of their previous 19 games, but they put the game out of reach with 10:13 to play. A free kick toward the goal got through the Falcons defense and past Bradley, and sophomore Nick Fleury had plenty of time to corral the ball and kick it into the net for a 3-0 advantage.

“They did exactly our game plan. Keep the ball on the ground, don’t go for the home run every time, play that indirect soccer,” Zipke said. “It was just getting pinged around right at the beginning of the game and they did a great job.”

While the Hopkinton offense starred early, the defense took the spotlight in the second half, calmly diffusing any attempts the Falcons made at setting up in the Hawks end. Bow possessed the ball for much of the second half but got only two shots all game on keeper Robbie Ferguson. The Hawks defense, led by a quartet of seniors in Liam McNicholas, Matt French, Wes Rose and Keenan Trahnstrom, made sure he had an easy day.

“That’s, in my mind, just as rewarding as any 3-0 lead at halftime,” Zipke said. “Coming into the championship game and getting a shutout? What better can you do than that?”

Emotions after the final seconds went in opposite directions for a pair of senior-led teams. For the Falcons, there was the disappointment for 16 seniors in seeing their championship careers end with a loss – as well as pride in the feat that reaching four straight finals is.

“We had a heck of a run,” senior co-captain Sam Cheney said. “Every single person on this team deserves to be here right now. … Give it to Hopkinton, it was their year. They’re a fantastic team, they’ve worked hard all season to get here just like us. The better team won here today.”

For the Hawks and their five seniors, however, none of whom had played in a title game before yesterday, a new mark was made.

“Since freshman year, I’ve been wanting to hold that plaque up,” Doug Fleury said. “This year, preseason, I just knew it. We as seniors … would be able to hold that plaque up, because this is by far the best team I’ve played with here.”

(Drew Bonifant can be reached at 369-3340 or at abonifant@cmonitor.com, or via Twitter @dbonifant.)

Related

The playoff history between Hopkinton and Bow boys’ soccer teams

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Though the Hopkinton and Bow boys’ soccer teams have developed a nice rivalry, they’ve met only three times in the postseason. 1998 – No. 9 Hopkinton 3, No. 8 Bow 2 (first round) 2012 – No. 3 Bow 2, No. 2 Hopkinton 1, OT (semifinals) 2013 – No. 1 Hopkinton 3, No. 2 Bow 0 (championship) …

Legacy Comments1

I'm so proud of my nephew, Brian Hauschild. Way to go Hawks!!

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