With 13 returning players and six new additions to the team, Andover Field Hockey looks to a combination of talent and hard work to lead it to victory this season. The team saw great success last season, no one plans to coast through the games ahead. “The team has high hopes, but that won’t keep us from working as hard as we can,” said forward Colleen Flanagan ’10. New players to the team include post-graduate Emilie Kannekens ’10, Natalee Sohn ’11, Kate Wiener ’11, Catherine Andeisa ’12, Elizabeth Paul ’12 and Cara Daly ’13. Together they add great depth to the team and will play a vital role in many games this season. Continuing last season’s theme of strong team cohesion, the new players are sure to be warmly welcomed this year. With traditions such as drawing Andover ‘A’s on hands before every game, many players describe the Phillips Academy Field Hockey team as a family. Daly, the only freshman to make the team this year, said she is excited to be a member of the team. She said that it is definitely a challenge being the youngest member, but she looks up to the upperclassmen. “I’m excited to be on a varsity team and to be able to depend on my teammates. Seeing the other players makes me want to push myself harder to be more like them,” Daly said. The returning players will provide key leadership for many of the new girls this year, and for good reason. Andover had a very strong season last year, reaching playoffs and eventually finishing fourth in New England. Despite the team’s victories, no one plans to take the previous success for granted. Captain Kyleigh Keating ’10 said, “We still have to push ourselves. We took a lot of close games last year that could have gone either way, so there are some teams who really want to beat us now.” Coach Kate Dolan said that it is difficult to predict how the girls will play when they finally take the field, but that their performance in the first game will help her gauge how they will do in the rest of the season. Right now, the players are focusing on working hard so their practice pays off on the field. Dolan said, “We just have to do our best every game, every sixty minutes.” Andover will face Worcester Academy in its first scrimmage this Saturday.
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