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Tim Hug returns from injury to lead Hauppauge boys soccer to victory over Westhampton

Hauppauge defender Tim Hug, middle, celebrates his goal

Hauppauge defender Tim Hug, middle, celebrates his goal with his teammates against Westhampton Beach, Monday, March 29, 2021. Credit: George A Faella

It read like a scene from a movie script.

The soccer team’s star player -- in this case Hauppauge’s Tim Hug -- gets hurt, but tells his coach, Jamie Edson, he’ll be back.

"This is the first time I’ve ever seen him get hurt," Edson said. "When I got out there, the first thing he said to me is, ‘I’ll get it taped up and I’ll be fine.’ "

He certainly was. The senior center back missed about five minutes getting his left ankle taped, but Hug returned in time to assist the tying and winning goals. Host Hauppauge scored three times in the final 16 minutes and 45 seconds to earn a thrilling 4-3 come-from-behind victory against first-place Westhampton in a Suffolk League III match on Monday.

"He’s just awesome. He’s so good," said Edson of Hug, who led the Eagles in goals (10) last season as a defender. "You put him up top and he makes things happen."

Hauppauge (5-2) has been to the Suffolk A championship games the last three seasons and won titles in 2017 and 2019. The Eagles have a history of scoring dramatic goals in crunch time. Monday was certainly no different after Westhampton led 3-1 at the half. The Hurricanes (6-1) received two goals from junior Andre Insalaco, who now has 13 on the season and eight assists to lead the Island with 21 points.

But the Eagles -- who played the second half with a strong wind at their back -- got within one when Ryan Rush scored on a corner kick with 16:45 remaining. (Hug went down with his ankle injury just seconds earlier.)

Hug returned to the field with a fresh tape job with under 10 minutes to play. He found Aidan Augeri who scored the equalizer at the 8:53 mark. The Eagles continued to press Westhampton -- which had not allowed a goal in league play entering the game.

Hauppauge finally broke through when Hug took a direct kick that deflected to Zach DelGuidice, who made a deft move past a few Hurricane defenders and blasted a left-footed screamer into the net with 2:43 left on the clock.

"When I saw him with that ball on the top of the 18[-yard box]," Hug said, "I knew it was going in right away."

DelGuidice didn’t disappoint.

"It doesn’t matter what your record is," he said. "It doesn’t matter who you are. We’re going to come out fighting."

Hug added: "We’ve never been the most talented skillfully, but we’re the hardest workers you’ll ever play against. We’re aggressive, we’re physical, and we never quit."

Perhaps, a sequel is in the works for Hauppauge.

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