Google defines a steam engine as, “an engine that uses the expansion or rapid condensation of steam to generate power.” This definition can also be used to describe the junior varsity field hockey team. On a 2-0 winning streak with shutouts in both games, the team is being powered by their mojo and using it on the field.
Mother nature made a surprise visit to the team’s first game on Sept. 6. A constant drizzle fell upon the Patriot’s turf as they played Sherwood. Nevertheless, through the elements, the Patriots were able to rack up three goals in the first half and two in the second half for a total of five, allowing none in return from the Warriors.
Coach Maddie Averill has placed emphasis on team hustle from the beginning of the season, and it showed in the Patriot’s play. “We didn’t have to walk during the game; our team fitness is great,” freshman Jamie Stern said.
On Sept. 11, the Patriots made their way to Northwest. With one win already in their back pocket, the team had another strong showing and defeated the Jaguars 6-0 with goals from sophomores Hannah Mirza and Alexa Kantor and freshmen Quinn Lugenbeel, Kelly Baldwin, Kirby Child and Darcy Touchette. The goals were evenly distributed within the game with three for each half.
Even with only two games completed in the season, the team feels secure about their game play. “I’m feeling very confident that we are going to get a shutout for every game this season. We’ve done a great job so far,” Mirza said.
In addition to the wins themselves, the fact that they have won both games with no opposing goals has the Patriots feeling assured in themselves. Sophomore Leah Kellert said, “We haven’t gotten scored on yet and that makes me feel glad to be alive.”
The Patriot’s back-to-back wins are motivating them to play harder in their upcoming games, particularly against rival school Churchill (scheduled for Oct. 4). “We want to win, we want to go through the season undefeated and especially, we want to beat Churchill,” sophomore Mia Silver said.
Though there may be teams without the juice, there is no team without leaders. Silver, Kellert and Kantor are the newly elected captains for this season.
These are three different players, yet with one similar leadership strategy. Kantor said, “We as captains tell the team what we’re doing wrong and how to fix it. But we try to say it in a nice way so we can make it fun and improve as well.”
Another big part about high school sports is the support that JV and varsity give each other. Junior Kayla Hill, a varsity player, said, “I’m proud that the momentum from last year with an almost undefeated season is continuing with the support from the talented freshmen and returning sophomores.”