Boys' Varsity Soccer Scores 3-0 Victory Against Trinity

It was a picture-perfect fall day on the Hilltop as the Boys’ Varsity Soccer team continued its 2022 campaign against league rival Trinity. It was the first matchup between the two since last year’s NYSAIS quarter-final match that saw the Hackley Hornets take down the No. 2 seed Trinity.

Hackley came out strong and pressed the pace from the get-go. Dan Paridis ’23 almost created the dream start when he hit the outside of the post just 20 seconds into the game. Trinity was an aggressive side with good energy and possession, but Hackley broke through at 7:16 when Dan’s dangerous cross was deflected by a Trinity defender into his own goal. Hackley continued to create good opportunities from the wings while keeping Trinity at bay.  
In a devastating and unlucky turn of events, standout left back, captain Cole Joseph ’23 was badly injured when he collided with a Trinity player late in the half. The game was delayed 40 minutes as an ambulance came to get Cole. Always the embodiment of hard work, grit, and resilience, Cole was strong, positive, and upbeat, despite his pain. The players rallied in response to Cole — who embodies the heart and soul of the team — as they knew he would want and demand.  
With 4:22 left in the first half, Cliff Chapman ’24 took advantage of the Trinity goalie, who had come out high off his line to clear a ball. Cliff drilled a 50-plus yard shot perfectly over the goalie and into the top half of the Trinity goal for a 2-0 lead. Hackley goalie John Churchill ’23 stood tall and made several key saves to keep the half-time score 2-0.  
Dan scored mid-way through the second half to make it 3-0. Max Ngbokoli ’23 played the perfectly weighted through-ball to Dan, who then eluded two Trinity defenders before curling the ball into the far post corner.  
With the daylight fading quickly, the final whistle blew. It was a good win against a tough, physical, and competitive Trinity side. Goalie John Churchill got the clean sheet, and deservedly so. All of it, however, was overshadowed by the injury to Cole, who we all had on our minds.  
The long weekend provided a little bit of respite for tired players and some nagging injuries. The boys are now 8-1 on the season and 7-1 in league play. Next up will be a feisty Dalton team that sits near the bottom of the table but can still cause problems if the Hornets are not prepared.