Andover Girls Field Hockey led 2-0 for most of its home opener against Brooks on Thursday, until conceding a last-minute goal. The 2-1 win against Brooks was followed by a 3-0 win against Loomis Chaffee on Saturday, bringing the team’s record to 4-0.
According to Meg Stineman ’25, when the team conceded a goal in the final minutes against Brooks, it added a high amount of pressure to the closing minutes of the game. However, she commended the team for staying composed and closing out the game for a win.
“Passing into space was definitely something we did really well today, and I would also say staying composed in the last part of the game. It was definitely a really nerve-racking game for the whole team, but I thought we really kept ourselves together and stayed controlled, and that led to the win,” said Stineman.
Leading up to the game against Brooks, the team wanted to work on its spacing on the field, according to Neily Ware ’25. Rather than having all players running towards the ball, Ware explained that spreading out would allow for more passing options, and thus, more goal-scoring opportunities.
“One of the big things we needed to work on after our Lawrence Academy(Lawrence) game on Wednesday was our spacing. We were way too clumped especially in the offensive circle, we were too close together. We needed to work on that and it actually did show a lot in our game. Our coach Martha [Fenton] mentioned today at practice that we improved quite a bit from Wednesday, which was exciting to hear that we used our space well and that we used the width better. That really helps in the circle because it allows us to play more two touch hockey rather than everyone clumping towards the ball,” said Ware.
In its game against Loomis, the team was able to recover from a slow start and bring energy to the game. Although the team scored two goals in the first half, the second half was when speed-of-play really picked up, according to Co-Captain Keira Harder ’23.
“I mean Loomis day is always very fun. We hit a bit of traffic coming down, so the bus ride ended up taking a little longer than we were expecting, but I still think the team rallied a lot. We were playing music on the bus beforehand, getting ready to go. I think at first we came out a little bit flat, but then our energy at the start of the second half was incredible. We went right down, got a corner, got a goal right off the bat. We were already ahead 2-0, but that moment was really amazing to see the team right after half time say, ‘Alright guys, this is what we’re gonna be doing going forward,’ and to really see that shift in energy was awesome,” said Harder.
After struggling to convert its shots into goals in last week’s game against Lawrence, the team took this week’s games as an opportunity to work on its finishing, according to Harder. The team only scored once against Lawrence, but it scored five goals across two games this week, including a shutout against Loomis.
“Since the last game, I feel like there has been a change in goal scoring. We’ve been able to put the ball in the net more. Compared to the Lawrence game, which was our second game, we were really struggling to put the ball away. We had like 31 shots and one goal, so seeing the difference from that game to this game is awesome,” said Harder.
Andover Girls Field Hockey will play at home against Tabor Academy on Saturday and Governor’s Academy on Wednesday.