In tomorrow’s edition of The Journal News and on LoHud.com, you can read this week’s field hockey notebook. In it, I examine Thursday’s highly anticipated matchup between Nyack/Suffern and details on this weekend’s Briarcliff tournament. Also, I mention that North Rockland’s young roster making steps forward.
Here are some news & notes I couldn’t fit into my story…
Carmel on the rise
The Rams, led by senior Cassie Schuttrumpf and Kaitlin Murphy, have jumped out to a 6-1-1 record this year. They lost to Ossining in the third round of Sectional play.
Schuttrumpf, who is juggling college offers from Ithaca, Montclair and Susquehana, mentioned which matchups she is looking forward to as the year progresses:
“We are definitely looking forward to seeing Putnam Valley on their home turf. Probably Mahopac too.”
Coach Andrea Caso explained that her squad’s goals are high and that she won’t permit them to rest on the laurels of a successful start.
“Our goal for this year is to take one step forward, no matter what it takes to get there,” Caso said. “Going undefeated two seasons in a row is a challenge. We had a tough loss to Lakeland.”
Pelham, Briarcliff, Valhalla and Pleasantville are the four participants for this year’s Briarcliff tournament. The first round games will take place on Thursday at separate locations and the championship/consolation matches will take place at Briarcliff high school.
Briarcliff coach Danielle Fiore explained that the annual tournament is valuable because it pairs local teams from two different leagues.
“I played in this tournament because I went to Lakeland,” Fiore said. “It’s huge. I love the tournament because I played in it and now I coach in it.”
Amy Colantuono, Pelham’s coach, explained that a grass surface (Pelham plays on grass and so does Briarcliff) can provide a distinct disadvantage for a team used to playing on turf.
“We are used to playing the bumps and everything. I do think it makes a different when teams know how to play on grass. The game is a lot faster on turf but our team will be conditioned for (grass).”
Rockland’s top squad’s face off
Suffern and Nyack both have 5-1 records with their only losses coming to Westchester schools. While neither coach said that they outright consider their squads to be the county’s best, they are clearly pleased with their strong starts.
“They fit together like a puzzle,” Suffern coach Bernadette Gannon said. “I’m not seeing where somebody can just come up and say, ‘mark this number and that number.’ It’s hard to see how much depth we have on the field.”
Nyack’s Cheryl Eglin added:
“Do I think they believe they can (be the best Rockland team)? Yeah. I’ve tried to instill that they need to work hard….I think my team feels confident and I think i’m pushing them to be a step higher.”