As field hockey season wraps up, senior Erin Williams reflects on the team, season
By Libby Seguin
It’s almost the end of fall sports, and the Upper Arlington Field Hockey team has had a full schedule. Senior player Erin Williams has been playing field hockey since her sophomore year and has enjoyed every aspect of the sport. The team has played against their rival Columbus Academy and even beat St. Ursuline Academy. Even though the team has had glorious moments, there are still skills to improve. Williams discusses preparation for big games, how the leaders take control, and the coaching staff’s positive attitudes.
Q: How has the season been going overall?
WILLIAMS: The season’s been going really well I think it’s definitely our best year yet since I’ve been at the high school. We’ve been really successful in like, stepping up to big competition and stuff… when we’re playing really hard teams we’ve been doing really really well with that, I think we rise to the occasion really well. I dunno, I think overall we’ve kind of surprised ourselves with like how well we’ve been meshing and everything, everyone gets along really well on and off the field and I think that that’s really showing with how we work together with transitions and stuff like that.
Q: As a senior and a leader, what have you and the other seniors and captains been doing to bring the team closer together?
WILLIAMS: I think the captains have been doing a great job, by keeping it fun and friendly atmosphere and stuff… everyone’s really open and I feel like the age boundaries aren’t really there, especially between the junior and senior class but then like it carries down into the sophomores. There aren’t any freshmen on Varsity, but there are freshman playing JV… we have buddy gifts that we do every game and so that links younger girls to older girls and stuff and so everyone’s getting to know each other that way. And then we have team lunches and team dinners that we carpool together and stuff and I think that brings everyone together.
Q: How have the underclassmen been doing playing on varsity?
WILLIAMS: The underclassmen have done really well, like a lot of girls have… you can tell that they have worked really really hard over the summer just from like conditioning and stick skills and stuff from last year… there’s been a ton of improvement so that’s pretty exciting because it sets them up for next year.
Q: Which game has been the biggest so far?
WILLIAMS: I think, like in our little UA bubble I think the Academy game was the biggest thing because it’s a team that we’ve always had a rivalry with… we’ve been like talking about all along… but Saturday, this past Saturday, we played a team from Cincinnati that was like really really good and we went into over time and won that game by one and it was like sick, so in my eyes that was our biggest game.
Q: What do you guys do to prepare for a rivalry game?
WILLIAMS: We talk a lot about it… a lot times the captains will send us notes in class and little gifts and quotes and stuff to kind of get us like mentally prepared and we usually have pretty intense practices the night before and we have team like dinners and lunches before the big games and just kind of like stress how important it is to do well and step up to the occasion.
Q: What has been your biggest struggle?
WILLIAMS: Our biggest struggle is coming out in the first couple minutes of the game. A lot of times we sit back a little bit, before we really get our intensity going and our legs going and stuff so we really need to work on coming out really really strong from the first whistle all the way through the end of the game.
Q: What’s the ratio of grade levels on the team?
WILLIAMS: On varsity we don’t have any freshman this year. We have like a couple of sophomores, a couple of juniors and a ton of seniors. So I think there are going to be a lot of open spaces next year.
Q: How are your coaches?
WILLIAMS: Our coaching staff is a lot better this year. Our head coach has gotten really positive and stuff and I think we just have a much more positive tone at practices and games than we did like in the past years and so that’s really fun and we have a new assistant coach that keeps things really light and sarcastic.