Younger Players Step Up During Tough Loss Against Medway

Kayla Sullivan

Junior Alex Hulme hands the ball off to Junior Barrett Hanlon at the away game against Medway on Friday, October 22. Video by Kayla Sullivan

By Kayla Sullivan
This past Friday, October 22, the Hillers varsity football team suffered a tough loss away against Medway with a final score of 35-6.  The game was expected to be a challenge; Hopkinton was missing their starting quarterback, junior Mike Decina, and starting running back and safety, sophmore Ryan Bohlin.  Also, Medway is ranked one of the top teams in the TVL.  “It’ll definitely be a challenge, but I think it will be a good opportunity for other players to step up,” said Decina previous to the game.

Hank Rudden, a sophmore at HHS, Alex Hulme, a junior, and Max Robidoux, a senior, shared responsibility for the quarterback position.  When asked what it was like to play in his first Varsity game, Rudden said, “It was really exciting.  I was a little nervous, but Mike [Decina] was mentoring me throughout the game, which made me feel more comfortable.  The team made me feel comfortable too, and they told me to have fun.”  Anthony Gonzalez, the Hillers Defensive Coach, said he was “proud of Hank Rudden, who stepped in and took on a very challenging role, but did it to the best of his ability.”

The game was off to a rough start, with Medway scoring their first touchdown only 3 minutes into the game.  Medway scored 3 more touchdowns before the second quarter was over, and with only 4 minutes left they intercepted the ball and scored again one play later.  Hank Rudden completed a pass to HHS senior Jake Whittles, the team’s running back and cornerback, with only 2 minutes left in the half, but time ran out and the final halftime score was 35-0 Medway.

The Hillers started the second half on a more positive note, with junior Alex Hulme, a wide receiver and cornerback, returning a kick for 15 yards.  The Hillers made it to 3rd down with 6 yards to go, and Robidoux completed a pass to sophmore Jack Lampert, another wide receiver and cornerback, resulting in a 1st down and goal on the 1.  After one imcomplete pass, Jake Whittles had a one yard run for the Hillers only touchdown of the night. Hopkinton missed the 2 point conversion, leaving the score at 35-6.

During the fourth quarter, the Hillers recovered a Medway fumble at 1st and 10 on Medway’s 46 yard line.  Later, runningback Mitch Campbell, another sophmore at HHS, ran the ball to the 35 yard line.  Hopkinton kept possession of the ball, but the clock ran out and the Hillers were left defeated by the Mustangs with a final score of 35-6.

When asked about how the game went, Coach Gonzalez stated, “It was very disappointing, I thought we could’ve played better, but they were a very strong team, to their credit, and that’s why they’re sitting in the top of the TVL right now.”  Coach Gonzalez also said that he believes the team needs to work on their confidence; he stated, “There’s a lot of young guys playing, so I think sometimes they second guess themselves.”

The Hillers’ next game is this coming Friday, October 29, at home vs. Bellingham.