Field hockey overcomes challenges in shortened season

Forward Kate Aschenbach (9) brings the ball up field for an offensive possession.

After a rough off-season of wondering whether or not a season was coming, field hockey is back on the field this spring.

Last season finished on a 1-0 loss to rival BCC, and returning players have put effort into this offseason to come better than before, even with a shortened season.

The COVID-19 pandemic has made this an unorthodox season. This includes masks being worn at all times for players, mandatory health check-ins with the trainer before practice, and social distancing anytime they aren’t playing.

The Wildcats offense does it’s best to work the ball around and get shots on goal. (Photo Courtesy of Lifetouch)

“The practices have gone a lot better than I expected with all the protocols. The girls are really taking everything very seriously and it was really easy to get into the groove this season,” head JV coach and assistant varsity coach Laura Brager said.

The season started out slow with devastating losses to rival BCC and an overtime loss to Churchill with the team scoring no goals in those games. However, the team turned the season around with a big win against Whitman with sophomore Kate Aschenbach scoring the only goal.

“The start of the season was hard because it was so different, but we all made the most of it and had a lot of fun which made us start winning some games,” junior Marissa Krantz said.

After a huge win against Whitman, the team had a complete turnaround and won the next two with a 2-0 win against Wooten and a 3-1 win against Sherwood on senior night. The seniors being able to play this season was many of the player’s favorite thing about the shortened season.

“None of us thought it would be possible to play this season so it was amazing when we found out we could play,” senior Tatyana Ramirez said.

The starting defense breaks it down before the game begins against Sherwood. (Photo Courtesy of Lifetouch)

Ramirez was one of the captains of the team along with other seniors Zaniv Chhina and Ellie Poersch.

“It was somewhat tough being a captain as we had to make sure all the girls were following the rules and staying motivated when things were getting hard. However, it was super fun and one of my favorite seasons I’ve ever had,” Ramirez said.
With a long offseason of fall sports being delayed and winter and spring seasons having cancellations, many fall athletes didn’t believe they would have a season. On January 29th, 2021 MCPS announced that fall sports would be having a season this year.

“I was super excited to hear we would be back with the team even if it was just for a short amount of time. As a captain, I was just making sure that everyone would stay pumped throughout the offseason and through the season,” Chhina said.

The field hockey team is hoping to build off the great momentum they built at the end of this season and carry that into next season and will have to restock all the valuable seniors they are losing this year.