The Student News Site of Hudson High School

The Explorer

The Student News Site of Hudson High School

The Explorer

The Student News Site of Hudson High School

The Explorer

Hudson Football is paving their way to success this season

Hudson playing against the Nordonia Knights, which proved to be one of the most influential games of the season.
Amelia Kloss
Hudson playing against the Nordonia Knights, which proved to be one of the most influential games of the season.

What a year for the Hudson High School Football team! Off of an eight game winning streak, it looks like the Hudson Football team may end the season undefeated. With many new and veteran players showing their leadership, this team has shown up to every game ready, and their record shows it. Here is a brief breakdown of what has happened in this awe-inspiring season and what could be in store for the future.

This season started with a captivating win against Solon with an electric performance by Jagger Pallay (who had 151 passing yards as well as 93 yards on the ground). Pallay adds how “All 3 sides of the ball, Offense, Defense, and Special Teams have been doing great.” and that they “need to keep working hard and don’t get complacent”. The next few games against Euclid, Warren Harding, and Twinsburg were relatively easy, with Ian Ludewig (the starting running back) carrying for 152 yards and two touchdowns against Warren Harding. The first challenge that the team faced was against Wadsworth, which Hudson beat 17-7, thanks to a touchdown by Ludewig and Trey Sharp as well as a field goal by DJ Ashe. Talking to Sharp, he mentioned how the football team is  his “family” and that the key factor in a good team is “love” and “[caring] for one another”.  

Morales high and reenergized, Hudson went on to win against Brecksville-Broadview Heights with an astounding 45-0 score, which even included a pick six by the defense. In addition, the depth of this team was tested, with six people recording rushing yards (which include Pallay, Peyton Neher, Noah Broski, Teagan O’Guinn and Gio DePompei). This team was on an absolute roll and it seemed almost impossible for them to come even close to losing. But the team would truly be tested against a surprising opponent, the Nordonia Knights.

Down 14-0 with the half winding down. Up to this point, Hudson had never been losing by more than a touchdown to separate them. Nordonia looked electric and ready to play while Hudson had already given up a turnover on downs. Joey Palinkas, Quarterback for the Nordonia Knights, was weaving through defenders like butter and it seemed like there was nothing Hudson could do. It looked as though Hudson was just getting into the groove of things but a miscommunication on special teams caused a fumble on a field goal attempt. But with how close-knit this team is, Hudson managed to force a fumble and put together a drive, capped off with a rushing touchdown by Pallay. 

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After halftime, Hudson looked like an entirely different team. On their first drive, they scored a touchdown with Ludewig, and Palinkas was under constant pressure. With the momentum shifting, Hudson won this game 28-14, thanks to the unrelenting pressure and determination of the team. As I talked to Reece Bacak, his first time playing football as a junior wide receiver for Hudson, he mentioned how ‘gelled together [the team] is and we learned something new everyday.” 

With this obstacle out of the way, Hudson was on a roll, beating opponent after opponent and recently beat Brunswick 35-13. Key contributors from that game include Jack Jenkins and Nolan Tanner. Talking to Tommy Ricard, a junior for the Hudson Explorers playing Tackle/Guard, he explained how the team has “come together” and how their motto is to “finish”. He also touched on how “football is a sport where everyone needs to be on the same page, from watching film throughout the week to executing in game.” It is safe to say from interviewing many of the football players that all of these players are committed to their team and most importantly, have extremely strong connections and bonds with each other. 

The future of this team is very bright. Many teams will have strong players but lack teamwork. With this team, it is evident that all of the players care about each other and are unselfish. Watching from the sidelines, you can tell that everyone is passionate about the sport we call football. Whether it be the student section jumping up and down when we get a first down, the band playing every time the Explorers score a touchdown, or the players on the sidelines cheering on their teammates, it becomes clear why the football team refers to themselves as “family”. With this upcoming game being the last regular season game against the rival Stow Bulldogs, the team will surely come through with a victory. As for the playoffs, this team is capable of going far, and the only thing stopping them is the leaders on the field. As junior Josh Jacob puts it, “In any team, there has to be leaders (people who are willing to do the hard things to make a team work). We have a lot of seniors who have had that mentality and really shown it on the field.” With a team full of leaders, and a team that cares so deeply about each other, it will surely be one of the most exciting postseason performances this city has ever seen.

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About the Contributor
Kai Kurokawa, Reporter
Kai Kurokawa is a senior at Hudson High School. This is his second year writing for The Explorer. He mainly writes about sports but specializes in reporting on the football team and local sports teams. Kai is involved in many clubs around the school, including being Vice President for Student Government and the Director of Special Events in the National Honors Society. In his free time, Kai makes music on Spotify and Apple Music, plays the trumpet in the marching band, and runs the 400 meter dash in Track and Field. He hopes to pursue a career in sports journalism and continue his music career as an independent artist.
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