Hudson soccer set to make first-ever regional semifinal appearan - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Hudson soccer set to make first-ever regional semifinal appearance

HUDSON, TX (KTRE) -

The Hudson soccer team is on a historic postseason their school and community will never forget. The boy’s soccer team has made their deepest playoff run in program history, now that they've found themselves in the regional semifinals.

Under the direction of head coach Richard Meisel, he and this team have stamped a new standard for soccer at Hudson.

“This year we were trying to raise the bar a little higher,” said senior captain Charly Hernandez.

“We’re not just another team that's come through Hudson. To actually show our community that we can go far is exciting,” said senior captain Christian Medina.

The Hudson soccer team has gone through a miraculous transformation once Meisel took over the program five years ago.

“I'm proud of the kids. I'm proud of their efforts and where we've come as a program,” said Meisel.

During Meisel's his first year at Hudson, the team went 4-14-2. Four years later, they're now 22-3.

“The guys have set the bar now where every team has to try and one-up it. I don't know where it's going to end, but the bar has definitely been raised for this program,” said Meisel.

With a team motto of "take the next step" each year has been a stepping stone to make it to the regional semifinals for the very first time.

In 2015, Meisel lead Hudson to their first-ever playoff appearance, and then won their first postseason game the following year.

“They've shown their heart and their mental fortitude. That's not easy,” said Meisel.

It's helped having a goal scoring record holder in Hernandez, who has put 35 goals away this year.

“He's just a dynamic scorer. He's what every soccer coach wants in a goal scorer. He’s somebody that other teams just don't see coming,” said Meisel. “When the whistle blows and the ball gets near him, look out because there's a good chance something special is about to happen.”

“This year I was wanting to be more of a team player than last year,” said Hernandez. “I have 17 assists so I've been passing the ball a lot more. I guess the chances have been falling to me and I've just been lucky to put them away.”

Not only do the Hornets have talent, they have an unbreakable bond that has yet to be beaten this postseason.

“We're a lot closer. It seems like we work together and strive to make each other better,” said Medina.

“I love Meisel like a dad. He's always been there for me. He’s pulled me out of some deep stuff and he's always there telling me good job and good game. He's like a second dad to me,” said Hernandez.

“This is our family. These are my brothers and that's how I feel about these guys,” said Meisel. “This is a family that has come together and is doing something special. It's awesome to see.”

Hudson will play Wheatley in their regional semifinal game Friday night. They'll play at A&M Consolidated starting at 5 p.m.

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