Field hockey faces two consecutive ranked opponents

By Dom Rapposelli

Business and Distribution Manager

Coming off a 2-0 start to the 2023 campaign, Washington College field hockey dropped a pair of games to ranked squads against Salisbury University and Shenandoah University.

The Salisbury Seagulls, ranked fourth among Division III programs, marched into Chestertown on Sept. 6, held in check for a majority of the game. 

A large part of which was due to stellar defensive play on behalf of the Shorewomen.

“I think from that game we realized that we can hang with a team like Salisbury who’s ranked fourth while still keeping our composure,” sophomore Kendal Thomson said.

In hanging with Salisbury, the defense allowed just four goals on 30 shots. The game was scoreless at half and still a 1-0 game after three quarters of action. A trio of fourth quarter goals from the visitors however, was too much for WC to come back from.

Freshman goalie Charlotte Schurman earned Goose Nation TV Player of the Game honors with her career high 13 saves in the contest. The first year starter showed composure in the face of her first ever ranked adversary.

While the final score was 4-0, sophomore Faye Dorman believes the team can learn from their mistakes in this game.

“With such a loss, we as a team can step back and reevaluate what about our play was truly elevating us, and what we can better that can help us win even harder games than those we previously had this season,” Dorman said.

Dorman also received the honor of being Shorewoman of the Week last week with her performance through the team’s first two wins. 

Dorman was quick to recognize how her teammates put her in the position to succeed.

“Despite my own performance in the first two games, I think it’s more of a testament to my team’s strength to give me the opportunity to succeed,” Dorman said, “it’s more of an honor for our team and the success that we’ve had at the beginning of our season.”

The Shorewomen followed up the home loss with a road trip to twenty fifth ranked Shenandoah where the team fell 4-0. The defense one again faced a flurry of shots with 21 attempts by the Hornets.

Schurman and the defense kept the game close at half only down 1-0. Schurman registered eight saves in the contest while the offense fired eight shots on goal.

While a pair of losses are not ideal, Dorman believes these will not dampen the spirit of this team. 

“I highly doubt that two losses are enough to cut down any team, let alone one like ours,” said Dorman.

In keeping these games close, Thomson addressed how the team has worked in an effort to keep pace with these tougher opponents.

“We have been working really hard conditioning-wise and technically to keep up with our higher ranked opponents,” Thomson said, “I think it also was a true team effort between all of us to lock them down for as long as we did.”

These losses also provide early learning opportunities for the Shorewomen. Solid defensive play and an openness for learning from past experieces could set the team up well for a longer season ahead.

“We’re going to use those losses as an opportunity to refine our play and get ready for Catholic on Wednesday. We had the chance to play some really strong, ranked teams, which is definitely something that will make us better this season,” senior Kate Gromacki said.

After their game versus Catholic University on Wednesday, Sept. 13, the Shorewomen travel to Widener University on Sept. 16.

Photo caption: Freshman goalkeeper Charlotte Schurman posts career high in saves with 13 prevented.

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