Field hockey faces stiff competition

Stevenson

The field hockey team has been fighting hard to reach the post-season after a tough start to 2018 with a record of 3-4 including two overtime losses. The team has not given up, as they are ready for the challenge to come out as champions.

Katelyn Byram (#15) defends the ball against Shenandoah University on Sept. 15. (Photo by Sabina Moran)

Head coach Laurel Martin prepares her team by pushing them day in and day out, making sure they stay focused. Given the losses early in the season, the team must push through to win the conference, according to Martin. Winning the conference would help them reach their season goal, which is making the post-season or getting an NCAA bid.

Martin noted that the team must win one game at a time, including a game on Sept. 29 against No. 2-ranked Messiah College.

This year’s team is young with six freshman and 10 sophomores who continue to improve, said the coach. “The young class is pushing the returning players to another level,” Martin added. Not only is this team pushing themselves and working hard on the field, but they have also been busy off the field, in the weight room.

MC McFadden, assistant athletic director and head strength and conditioning coach, trained them during the off season three days a week.

McFadden said, “This team is very focused and works hard in the weight room. Their work ethic is incredible,” adding that this is what a team needs to be successful during the season. McFadden explained that she tells her other teams to just be like the field hockey team because of how hard they work.

Martin noted that some seniors to watch this year include forward Sara McVey, and midfielders Alexis Young and Ashley Meyer. These players are leading the pack in the fight for post-season play.

Stevenson field hockey lost on overtime to Shenandoah University at Mustang Stadium on Sept. 15. (Photo by Sabina Moran)

Martin said that to reach their goal, “The teams that we should beat, we must beat and beat them soundly as we can.” Once they do that, then they can look to overcoming the big teams like Messiah and No. 6-ranked Salisbury University.

The team faced No. 13-ranked Rowan University on Sept. 18 in Mustang Stadium, but were blanked by the undefeated team in a game that ended in a score of, 6-0.

In the 3-2 overtime loss to No. 28-ranked Shenandoah University on Sept. 15, the Mustangs scratched their way back into the game in the second half, tying it up to, 2-2 before the Hornets scored the winning shot during overtime. Sara McVey scored her sixth goal of the season in the contest.

Four days earlier, on a road trip to Catholic University, No.54-ranked, the Mustangs dropped a 2-1 overtime nail biter to the Cardinals. Sophomore Brigid Saroch scored Stevenson’s only goal of the game. Junior goalkeeper Kelsey Eure had four stops on the night, giving her 23 for the season at that point.

The team’s next home game in Mustang Stadium is slated for Tuesday, Sept. 25 vs. Gettysburg College.

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