action:article | category:SPORTS21 | adString:SPORTS21 | zoneID:40

Home » Sports » High School Sports

November 09. 2013 9:38PM

Four boys' soccer titles on the line Sunday

Hanover boys' soccer coach Rob Grabill is used to winning. When he took over the program in 2006, the Marauders were defending Class I champs. Over the next five years, they won five more titles, the first four in Division I, the last after Class I became Division II.

It's been three years since Hanover last won a championship, but the Marauders, now competing in Division I, are back in a final for the second straight year. Unbeaten (18-0-1), seeded No. 1 and coming off a 1-0 victory over Concord in the semifinals Thursday night, Hanover will face Alvirne High of Hudson (17-2-0) today at 6:45 p.m. in the last of four boys' soccer championships at Exeter High School's Bill Ball Stadium.

In the earlier games, third-seeded Derryfield School of Manchester faces No. 5 Sunapee for the Division IV title at noon, top-ranked Hopkinton plays No. 2 Bow for the Division III crown at 2:25 p.m., and No. 1 Windham takes on second-seeded Hollis/Brookline for the Division II championship at 4:30 p.m.

Hanover is led on offense by a trio of seniors: Xavier Tchana, Daniel Hazlett and Rocco Linehan. The three are responsible for 44 of the Marauders' 62 goals this season.

"I think Hazlett is the best player in the state" said Grabill. "Tchana is our leading goal scorer, and Linehan is such and athletic playmaker in the middle."

Equally impressive is Hanover's defense, backed by senior goalkeeper Alex Bynum. In 18 games this season the Marauders have recorded 14 shutouts and allowed only 5 goals.

Hanover suffered heavy graduation losses from the team that lost to Manchester Central, 2-1, in last year's final but made it back with help from younger players who thrived on increased playing time.

"The turnover created opportunities for some younger players to show what they can do" said Grabill.

One of those players was Jamie Dinoulas, who scored the only goal against Concord in the semis.

Grabill credits strong youth soccer programs in the Upper Valley, such as the Lightning Soccer Club, for supplying skilled players for his team.

It also helps to have a top notch college program in your backyard.

"We watch Dartmouth games," Grabill said. "We see great soccer close up. We go to their camps."

Hanover graduate Brendan Barth is currently a freshman on the Big Green squad, and Hazlett is considering attending Dartmouth, as well.

Hanover defeated Alvirne, 4-0, when they played back in September. But Grabill does not expect an easy game against the Broncos.

"Sunday's game will be nothing like that" he said. "They've won 14 straight since that September game. We've got a great deal of respect for Alvirne."

Alvirne is coming off a come-from-behind, 3-2 victory over Central in overtime. Raul Stedile tied the game in extra time off a corner kick by Robert Younghusband, and Kyle Salucco booted home the game-winner seven minutes into OT.

Division II

No. 2 Hollis/Brookine vs. No. 1 Windham

These teams also played for last year's Division II championship, a game Windham won in penalty kicks. Both teams are 16-2-0. Windham beat Hollis/Brookline 4-2 when the teams met in Windham during the regular season. Last year's state championship was the first for the Windham program.

Division III

No. 2 Bow vs. No. 1 Hopkinton

Bow (17-1-1) is looking to win its second Division III championship in as many seasons, but will have to hand Hopkinton (18-0-1) its first loss to do so. This will be the third meeting between the teams this season. Hopkinton posted a 2-0 victory at home, and the teams played to a 1-1 tie in Bow.

Division IV

No. 5 Sunapee vs. No. 3 Derryfield

Derryfield, last year's Division IV champion, advanced by beating 10th-seeded Profile of Bethlethem in Thursday's semifinals. The Cougars (16-2-1) had a 4-3 advantage in penalty kicks following a scoreless game through two overtimes. Sunapee (13-4-2) moved with a 2-1 victory over top-seeded Woodsville. Senior midfielder Nick Skarin scored Sunapee's second goal with 41 seconds to play.Skarin capped the scoring on a penalty kick when these teams played to a 2-2 tie during the regular season.


 NH Sports Angle more
Links to news and happenings around the world of sports with a Granite State connection, updated daily.

Mo'ne Davis, and why no one should laugh at the idea of a woman in Major League Baseball

Curt Schilling says smokeless tobacco caused oral cancer

Bill Belichick: Eagles joint practices as productive as any

Big Knockout Boxing has grown from NH debut to Las Vegas attraction

Toronto Blue Jays Minor League System: Philosophy change?

Spring trial likely for former UNH women's hockey coach

Special golf cart helping Vietnam veteran play game he loves article

And so it begins: Equipment distribution starts a new era in Plymouth football

Tailgating changes for UNH football games

Report: Pirates' pitcher Jeff Locke cleared in gambling probe involving childhood friend from Conway

Tim OSullivan: Even with NFL success, NHs Kelly remembers his roots

Chip Kelly: 'Put some Galoshes on and go play'

Survey says Duke the most hated college hoops team in NH

Cheyenne Woods, Tiger's niece, trying to make big time article

Gorham papermill owner Lynn Tilton is getting Yale tennis award

Ex-bank president co-authors racing book

New England Patriots are the most hated NFL team in the world

Travis Hughes: It's time to drastically overhaul minor league hockey in North America

Portsmouth native, 47, conquers 21-mile swim of the English Channel

Bennett to take control of the flags for Granite State Pro Stock Series

Air Force captain serving in NH honored before Red Sox-Yankees crowd at Fenway

Newmarket woman second to run solo across the U.S.

VIDEO: A car's-eye view of the demolition derby at Cheshire County Fair

With NASCAR's $8.2B TV deal, nobody wants to be at back of pack

Kelly tinkers with Philadelphia offense

MORE

 New Hampshire Events Calendar
    

    SHARE EVENTS FOR PUBLICATION, IT'S FREE!

Upcoming Events

 New Hampshire Business Directory

  

    ADD YOUR BUSINESS TODAY!