Field Hockey Begins Season with Wins at Thayer and Lawrence Academy

With the score tied 1-1 in the third quarter against Thayer, Andover Girls Field Hockey had a chance to take its first lead of the game with a corner. After two quick passes, Lucy Parker ’26 sent the ball across the circle to Ava Murphy ’24, who scored the winning goal. The team built on the 2-1 victory on Saturday with a 1-0 win on Wednesday against Lawrence Academy, putting its record at 2-0 to start the season.

Parker credited Co-Captain Shea Freda ’24 as one of the key components of the team’s success against Thayer. In particular, Freda’s versatility assisted the team on both sides of the field.

“Our center back, Shea Freda, is very good at getting the ball up the field, and is always in the play, always helping out attacking and defense. She was a very strong element to both of our goals,” said Parker.

Prior to both games, Freda explained that the team has had many opportunities to bond and build chemistry. The tight-knit relationships within the team off the field are crucial to play on the field, according to Freda. 

“Our team has built a lot of chemistry by cheering each other on at practice, hanging out outside of field hockey, and forming friendships. We definitely have a really close team bond which will help us keep building our trust on the field,” said Freda.

In the practices leading up to Saturday’s game, the team focused on developing connections and improving passing through a variety of drills. According to Parker, the team was able to translate its practice into success on the field.

“A lot of our practices are about working as a team, and passing as a team and as a unit, and a lot of our drills are team centered drills, so either a lot of passing or a lot of overlap runs. So, being able to play the next day and see it all happen is really cool. I feel like we have a lot of good times in the game where we did see those drills translating,” said Parker.

According to Quiana Bell ’26, the win on Wednesday against Lawrence was the result of the team playing as a cohesive unit. Specifically, Bell emphasized the team’s communication and passing, as well as the pace of many of its players.

“I think it was all about moving the ball. I think we’re really good at communicating with each other, and communicating what’s going on in the game, how we can do better and overall how we can work better as a team. And also everyone’s just pretty fast. I would say we have some nice speed, so that really helps in the game,” said Bell. 

Looking forward, Freda hopes the team will continue building upon its long-standing success on top of individual improvement. Last year, the team ended its undefeated season as NEPSAC Class A Champions, thus providing a strong foundation for this season ahead. 

“I think our main goal for this season is to reach the potential that we know we have. It will take every single person’s dedication and energy. There will definitely be bumps along the way but we know we have what it takes to get there,” said Freda.

Andover will have its home opener against Brooks on Thursday and play Loomis Chaffee away on Saturday.