After two weeks of struggles, the Hickman offense finally found what it had been looking for, the back of the net.
The Kewpies defeated Pembroke Hill 10-5 on Saturday at Cosmopolitan Park.
The win marked a dramatic improvement in the Kewpies’ offensive production. Five players scored multiple goals for Hickman (2-2).
The attack had struggled in the team’s previous two games, scoring a combined eight goals.
“We took more shots today and made better passes,” Hickman coach Jamie Mullen said. “I told the guys they were free to go to the goal. Once we did that, things opened up and we were able to build on that.”
After allowing Pembroke Hill attacker Zach Yates’ early goal, Hickman found an offensive rhythm and dominated scoring and possession for the rest of the game.
The Kewpies scored twice in the closing minutes of the first quarter. Midfielder Mike Moesel’s steal resulted in a Hickman fast break. Moesel found attacker Zach Nikin wide open behind the Pembroke Hill defenders, and Nikin beat goalie Gary Washburn. Hickman senior midfielder Andrew Mackley scored unassisted four minutes later.
The Kewpies’ offense kept up the torrid pace, scoring three goals in the first 10 minutes of the second quarter. Attackers Chris Hurst and Kieren Drapeau scored successive goals off Moesel assists. Mackley added another goal, firing a shot past Washburn from 30 feet.
“We worked on attacking all week and coach gave us the green light (to take shots),” Mackley said. “I figured why not take it. I couldn’t stand to lose to Pembroke this year.”
Mackley, Hurst, Drapeau, Nikin and Moesel finished with two goals. Moesel led the Kewpies with three assists.
Captain Colin Defenbau led Pembroke Hill with two goals and one assist.
Pembroke Hill had defeated Hickman each of the past two years. Mullen said most of his players were conscious of the teams’ history going into the game.
“More than how they played on the field, I’m proud of their attitude,” Mullen said. “Confidence was a big thing initially because (Pembroke) had such a good program last year, and they still do, but as we got rolling we started to believe we were a better team.”