Field Hockey Faces Exies

If the Andover Girls Field Hockey team is on top of its game tomorrow, it is going to be one of the closest games of the season. Coming into Andover/Exeter, the two teams match up very well. The Lady Blue Field Hockey team arrives at Exeter with a 7-2-4 record facing a 9-1-2 Exeter team. The two teams are even more equal than their records would suggest; both teams’ losses have come from close, suspenseful games. After last years 0-0 tie, both teams are ready to leave with a clear victory, but this season’s records do not dictate an easy win for either team. Coach Kate Dolan explained the two teams and the chemistry on the field. “They only have one loss. They’re the best team the school has had in at least ten years, but in a game like this season records don’t matter. For this game, the most aggressive but relaxed team will win. Last year we came into the game with a 12-0-1 record and they were below.500, but we got nervous and tied the game. With so emotion attached to his game, it’s really all about who can focus will all the distractions.” The teams are very well matched. Both teams fared similarly against the same opponents; their seasons look almost identical, and each team struggled to beat the same opponents. Both teams had 1-0 wins against St. Paul’s, but Andover clearly defeated NMH 4-1 while the Exeter girls worked hard to win 2-1 in overtime. Both teams struggled with close games against Tabor. The Lady Blue won 3-2 while PEA won 1-0. Both teams played Harvard JV, with PA players coming home with a 5-2 win and their Exeter rivals winning 4-0. PEA’s one loss went to Governor Dummer, but the Lady Blue lost to them too in an early season scrimmage match. Coming off very similar seasons, the two teams are literally neck-and-neck. Star midfielder Kelly Stecker ’05 said, “They’ve beat some of the same teams by a lot more than we have, but I still think we have a good chance to beat them. It’s all about who wants it more, and we really want to take the win this year.” The Lady Blue need to take an early lead in this game. They need to establish control of the ball before their Exeter rivals have the chance to score. With the excitement of Andover/Exeter and the added support of fans, the noon game should attract a lot of excitement. If the Lady Blue lose this game, it will be the end of their season. If they take the win, it will allow them the possibility of earning a playoff berth.