Field Hockey

Field Hockey Suffers First Loss of Season Against Deerfield

Sarah Rigazio ’18 has been playing for Andover Field Hockey since her Lower year.

With seven minutes left in the first half of its game against Nobles, Emily Batchelor ’19 shot a high ball into the back of the net to secure a 1-0 lead. Within the next two minutes, Batchelor assisted the team’s second goal, scored by Carly Kreytak ’20. Andover Field Hockey went on to defeat Noble and Greenough 2-1 on Wednesday and lost its first game of the season 1-3 against Deerfield on Sunday. The team’s record now stands at 13-1.

Against Deerfield, Andover struggled to play in hazardous weather. The intensity of the rain caused voices to be muted, among other complications, according to Brooke Keough ’19.

Keough said, “I think our energy was a factor in the game. It was rainy and cold, and a lot of the things in the game weren’t going our way, [especially] a lot of the calls. We [needed] to put that past us because there are a lot of uncontrollable things that we had no impact on.” 

Though the game broke the Andover’s undefeated season and 12-game win streak, the team handled its first loss well, using the game as an opportunity to learn and improve, according to Keough.

“Before Sunday, we were undefeated, so it was good to take the pressure off ourselves. I think it definitely taught us a lot. I think it was important for us to lose and learn what that feels like. We learned a lot from the game,” said Keough. 

Head Coach Kate Dolan wrote in an email to The Phillipian, “[The team learned that] losing is okay; it shows you things you need to work on and improve if you want to keep playing. Perspective is also important, as it’s one game and not our season, and it’s what you do with the experience that matters most.”

On Wednesday, Andover bounced back and defeated Nobles in a close game.

Batchelor said, “[Saturday’s] was definitely a memorable game because Nobles is always a tough opponent, and when we play them it is always highly anticipated.” 

Dolan added, “Nobles played aggressive and fast, and we held them by stopping their fast breaks and playing strong defense in our circle. We really did our best to stop their big hits, possess the ball, and use the outside of the field to pass to beat their game.”

With starting goalie Alexa Matses ’18 out injured, goalie Katie Wimmer ’21 stepped in and posted an 87.5 save percentage with seven saves in her first start.

Batchelor said, “Having Katie in net today was so awesome. She played so well, and I don’t think we could have asked any more from her.” 

Looking forward, the team knows that it has tough opponents ahead and is looking to prepare for upcoming games, according to Captain Elizabeth Welch ’18. 

Welch said, “I definitely think the team needs to improve on being aware that the teams we play are super strong and super tenacious, and we need to come back with that same energy. Whether it be stepping up to balls or using your body when you’re winning a battle, we need to come up more aggressive and ready to win and have that fire.”

Andover will play its last home game of the regular season against Cushing this Saturday.