Thirds Field Hockey Avenges Loss to Taft


Jeffrey Zhai ’20

Daphne Chao ’20 practices her stick skills.

One loss. Taft 1, Hotchkiss 0.

One year ago, that’s all that separated the Hotchkiss Thirds Field Hockey team from an undefeated season.  On the last game of the season home against Taft, the team suffered a shocking upset in what was supposed to be the cherry on top of a historic season.

When the team walked away this year with a 2-0 victory against Taft on Wednesday, September 26, it sent a message that the players are ready to give it another shot.

The biggest change and challenge for the team this year is the number of new players. To make sure it was ready for their first game, the team had to go back to the basics. Head Coach of Thirds Field Hockey, Mr. David Bolmer said, “Many of the players have never played before. The first week or so, we were starting from scratch. How do you dribble the ball? How do you hold the stick? How do you drive the ball? What are the rules? What can you do and what can you not do?”

Although the team is mostly comprised of new players, team captains Zoe Bank ’19, Daphne Chao ’20, Emma Contiguglia ’19, and Caroline Zhang ’20 have been working on making sure the new players are integrated into the team. To prepare for games, the team has been focusing on shooting and stick skills. Zhang said, “Everyone is really supportive of each other. [Many] of the players [who] were on the team the past few years have moved up to JV. It’s always different being on the same team with new people, but it’s a good team with awesome people and we’re all excited for the next season”

Another challenge for the team was the improvements in Deerfield’s team. The team also had to play on Deerfield’s grass field, which, unlike our fields, has a very bumpy surface that forced the players to hustle after the ball. Mr. Bolmer said, “We knew Deerfield was good. Last year they didn’t have a lot of substitutes, but this year they had quite a few.”

One of the team’s advantages is their ability to drive the ball down the field. Mr. Bolmer explains, “We had one person [Eliza Dana ’22] who could drive the ball 50 yards and they [Deerfield] had nobody who could do that. They tried to dribble it and because the grass was long, it was hard to control.”

With shutout victories over both Deerfield and Taft under its belt, the Thirds Field Hockey team is looking strong. However, the team will need more than just a hot start if it wants to complete its quest for perfection.