After losing a field hockey coach for the second year in a row after the 2016 season, the team began the hunt for a coach. Former University of Maryland field hockey and tennis player Welma Luus stepped up for the job.
Luus was born in Pretoria, South Africa, and began playing field hockey at a young age. She competed on the same competitive team as her sister Anel. She also has a brother named Hp. In high school, Luus was a three-sport athlete. She competed in field hockey, tennis, and track as she ran the 400 and 800m hurdles.
She decided to attend the University of Maryland since she felt like in South Africa there was minimal competition and she wanted to compete at a higher level. During her junior year she decided that she wanted to focus on field hockey as well and continued to play until she was a graduate student. In 2016, Luus was granted a sixth year of eligibility, making her eligible to play her fourth season of field hockey for the Terrapins. “Maryland had been my home for the last five years and being able to compete with my field hockey family for one more season really was a dream come true,” Luus said.
Luus has enlightened the field hockey program here with new plays, drills and skill. Although the team has a current losing record of three wins and seven loses, Luus has been able to develop the team skill and teach them what good hockey looks like in a short amount of time. “Coach Welma has taught me so much throughout this season. Although we have a losing record, I know that individually all of our skills has developed a ton and I believe we will do well in playoffs,” senior defender Jamie Glaser said.
As the season ends, players have high hopes that Luus’ intensity and passion to win will eventually bring the team back up to States. “She has really turned me and the rest of us into much better players, and I’m really glad that she became our coach,” junior defender Grace Henchel said.