Inconsistent squad suffers several disappointing losses in the first weeks of 2001 season
The varsity field hockey team played tough against Walt Whitman High School, but could not pull out the win. After losing 1-0 on their home field, the Blazers now stand half way through the season with a disappointing record of 2-4.
Matched up against Whitman, the team ranked number one in the county at the time, the Blazers played to their highest potential, according to Coach Amy Miller. "When they're on, when they're playing their game and working together, they can play with the best of them," she said. "They proved that tonight."
According to junior defender Carly Vieira, team cohesiveness allowed Blair to contend with such a highly skilled opponent. "We played better today than at the game we won [against Damascus]. Today we gelled as a team," she said.
Miller commended the defense for playing aggressively and not letting the Whitman offense advance. Blair used its impressive driving ability to their advantage multiple times against Whitman; Vieira's drives were especially strong.
Offensively, seniors Leslie Auerbach and co-captain Katie Jentleson exhibited great hits, stops and ball movement skills.
Because of the stiff competition that Blair unexpectedly provided for Whitman, the energy was high, especially in the second half of the
game, which was intense until the
Unfortunately, the team has not upheld the same intensity all season, but according to senior co-captain Ashley Moyer, their hard work is beginning to reward them.
"It took us a while to get into the swing of things," she said, "but this game we really pulled together and all our practice is finally paying off."
Vieira explained that the team's current record reflects the way they do not always play to their full potential. "We've gelled when we play against tough teams and if we gelled when we played less dominant teams, we'd crush them," she said. "I feel like we play down to other teams."
Despite their high level of play against a challenging team, the Blazers once again could not capitalize on all the scoring opportunities they earned for themselves against Whitman. "It's called finishing," Miller said. "We're doing
the right things but it's just not happening."
Tonight's game displayed exceptional defense by the Blair team, including a total of eight saves by sophomore goalie Anna Benfield.
The Blazers made a valiant but failed effort to be the first to defeat Whitman this season, a feat which Poolesville accomplished nights later.
Every player on the sidelines was on her feet shouting by the end of the game because they had missed opportunities to score and they had such confidence in themselves. "We were so close so many times," said junior forward Abby Celotto.
Junior Amy Nguyen said that this game will serve as a turning point in their season. "Now we know how good we can actually play," she said, "and we'll play well from now on."
Many girls on the team expressed pride in their performance against top-ranked Whitman, despite the fact that they didn't score the goals they needed to win. "Technically we lost," said Moyer, "but I think we can record this as a victory."
Lily Hamburger. Lily Hamburger, managing sports editor, is a proud senior and back for another year on <i>Chips</i>. Lily is a sports fan, a singer, and a softball player. Her favorite food is macaroni and cheese, favorite ice cream flavor is mint chocolate chip and favorite ninja … More »