New field hockey players show promise

Matt Gottfried

Amy Mcgowan, freshman, hits the ball to her teammate during the game between Kent State and Miami at Dix Stadium Oct. 23, 2004.

Credit: Jason Hall

Make no mistake about it, the 2005 Kent State field hockey team isn’t rebuilding, they’re simply re-stocking.

Though the first three games of the season may show otherwise, this youthful squad has faced the departure of six seniors, responsible for more than half of the team’s scoring last year. All that stands in their way of defending the Mid-American Conference title is time.

Seven freshman are looking to fill in the vacancies left by last year’s MAC champions. All are expected to make a mark.

“We’re starting a heck of a lot younger team this year then we have in the past,” said Kent State coach Kerry DeVries, “more so mentally then anything else.”

Inexperience always plays a vital role in the success of a young team and the only cure for such an ailment is time itself. Luckily for the Flashes, they open the season with nine non-conference games, leaving plenty of time of for the squad to gel together.

At the core of the team stand seven freshmen that have worked diligently with the guidance of DeVries and the upperclassmen.

“We have a really talented freshman class and they all come from different parts of the United States and the world,” said senior Carrie Rupp.

Among the many freshmen on the team from across the seas are midfielder/forward Natalie Barrett from Scotland, midfielder/back Melanie Bierens de Haan of Holland and midfielder/forward Britt van Pelt from Holland. Other freshman expecting to see plenty of playing time is the trio of midfield/backs MaryKate Hanosek, Gina Uguccioni and Sarah Nolan. Hanosek, who was a member of two Pennsylvania State championship teams in 2001 and 2004 in addition to a state runner-up finish in 2002, received second team All-state honors her senior year.

With all the success already experienced by this group, it’s hard for DeVries not to be excited about the future of the team. Once the youth grabs some experience and gels with the rest of the team, the sky is the limit.

Contact field hockey reporter Matt Gottfried at [email protected].