SOMERS, N.Y. – Somers field hockey finished 10-4-2 under new coach Michelle Armstrong last season and the Tuskers are looking to build on that in 2019.
“Our goals for this season are to create a very positive atmosphere on and off the field,” said senior Haley Dineen. “We hope to help each other learn and grow throughout the season. If we maintain a positive attitude as a unit, we will be successful on the field.”
The Tuskers won an opening-round playoff game over Hendrick Hudson last season but fell in the quarterfinals in heartbreaking fashion to Pearl River in a shootout.
Dineen and senior co-captain, Erin Clark, are three-year returning starters and midfielders for the Tuskers. Clark was named All-Section last season while Dineen was All-League.
“I feel I am very prepared to take on the leadership role as captain,” Clark said. “I have learned a lot and continued to develop my skills over the past two years. I feel Haley and I have a great dynamic and it really shows on the field. This year, we have worked a lot on becoming more vocal on the field and we think it will really lead to great results.”
Isabella Del Vecchio and Nieve Mahood, both juniors playing midfielder/forward, will also be relied on.
“They have been working really hard during preseason and are prepared to have a great season,” Clark said.
Dineen believes that sophomores Lily Carino and Julie Sirchia are going to have “amazing seasons.”
“They both play forward and are going to be a big presence on the field,” Dineen said.
The defense took a hit due to graduation and injury but senior Nicole Garrity is a returning starter in net. Graduates Grace Farina and Lindsey Hershfield were key players on defense. Senior Jen Campbell is out for the season, recovering from an ACL tear she suffered last spring in lacrosse.
Juniors Ryan Mellor and Julie Rosenberg are two players Dineen expects to step up and solidify the defense.
“They both have a lot of strength on defense,” Dineen said. “The two of them and our goalie, Nicole Garrity, are going to do great back there this season.”
Dineen thinks that speed is the team’s biggest strength.
“We have a ton of really fast girls such as Nieve Mahood, Bella Del Vecchio and Ciara Murphy,” she said. “I think our speed is going to help a lot with our transition up the field.”
Somers is scheduled to open the season against Pawling in the opening round of the Tuskers’ yearly tournament on Wednesday, Sept. 4. The Tuskers will then compete in either the championship game (5:45 p.m.) or consolation game (4 p.m.) the next day.
“Some team goals we have are to work more cohesively as a unit on the field and really finish and execute our corners,” Clark said. “We need to all show up and give 100 percent effort to each game and practice. We have a lot of very talented and committed athletes on our team. We all know what it takes to be successful this season and are willing to put in the work.”