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By Ed Niser

HUDSON — Groton-Dunstable came into Tuesday afternoon’s Midland B league contest with Hudson in search of its first win of the season.

The Crusaders got their wish as they streaked past the Hawks, 3-0, behind goals from Sarah Rice, Hanna Van Pelt and Kara Jussaume.

The Crusaders got on the board in the eighth minute and never looked back. Groton-Dunstable moves to 1-4-2 overall and 1-1-1 in Midland B play.

Groton-Dunstable has been making strides throughout the early stages of the season — Tuesday’s three goal outburst is the largest for the Crusaders in 2015.

“We have progressively gotten better in every match this season.” Groton-Dunstable head coach Charlie Valacer said. “Throughout the year, the girls have tried to improve and they have done so. I think it was during the Quabbin game when we started to see it come together. We had the ball in (Quabbin’s) end the entire game, but could not score. Today, we were able to score early — I think that was key.”

Rice got the Crusaders on the board with a quick strike in the eighth minute from inside the 18-yard box.

Groton-Dunstable rippled the mesh once again in the 18th minute on a cross from the right side by Sydney Volpe to Van Pelt. Volpe curled the ball into the box and Van Pelt settled it at her feet and blasted it in the left corner to give the Crusaders a 2-0 lead at the half.

“Sarah Rice had a couple of passes and a nice goal that were right there today,” Valacer said. “I thought Sydney Volpe played very well in the back for us. I think our passing in the middle of the field was good. I thought we did something well in every facet of the game.”

The Crusaders had a tough draw to start the season with games against the likes of Westboro, Wachusett and Tyngsboro.

“There was no, could’ve, would’ve, should’ve in those games,” Valacer said of the team’s early games. “Getting that first win was a long time coming.

The Crusaders are scheduled to return to action Thursday when it travels to rival North Middlesex at 5 p.m. With heavy rain predicted for the next few days, it is likely that the match will be postponed.

“North Middlesex can score the ball very well,” Valacer said. “Thursday is going to be a ough test for us,” he said. “If we did not get the win today, it might not have come for a while.”

Groton-Dunstable goalie sophomore goalie Maddie Tammaro stopped nine shots in her shutout of the season.

Follow Ed Niser on Twitter/Tout:@EdNiser

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