There was no pressure, athletes and coaches talk about their experiences playing at the first PA Field Hockey Senior Cup

There was no pressure, athletes and coaches talk about their experiences playing at the first PA Field Hockey Senior Cup

Lots of players who competed in the PA Subject Hockey Senior Cup last weekend obtained perfectly-deserved ovations and applause for their attempts, but Marissa Rice, a Lampeter-Strasburg senior actively playing for Staff Lancaster, acquired much more than most players, maybe even all of them.

When Rices title and high college were introduced ahead of Sunday afternoons championship sport vs . Group Hershey, Rice obtained a loud round of applause from about a dozen young girls sitting down powering Lancaster’s bench place.

The cheers arrived from gamers on the Kutztown University staff, which received the NCAA Division II nationwide championship last November.

Rice is a Kutztown dedicate. Her future teammates have been there to help boost and help the activity, so they took advantage of the option to cheer for a person they will know greater in a couple months.

Rices group for the weekend, Lancaster, two times experienced a single-intention potential customers over Hershey, but Hershey prevailed 3-2 in overtime when Downingtown East senior Nia Massey scored with a small in excess of five minutes remaining in OT.

*The 2023 NCAA Division II champions standing all through the National Anthem at the PA Senior Cup Championship Game. Image: John Pavoncello

Indeed, teams gained and missing in the inaugural event, which featured 8 regional teams from close to Pennsylvania. Even with some rain that delayed Saturdays timetable, each staff Looking at, Allentown, Philadelphia North, Philadelphia South, Harrisburg, and Pittsburgh have been the others performed a few moments on the 1st day.

Lancaster, coached by Manheim Centrals Morgan Briggs, and Hershey, coached by Downingtown Wests Courtney MacPherson, ended up the final two teams standing. They played in the initially round Saturday, and the scoring went exactly as it did Sunday, minus the additional time: Lancaster went up 1-. Hershey tied it. Lancaster went up 2-1. Hershey tied it.

The big difference on Sunday was that extra time was essential to establish a winner. Both equally sides created inroads toward the other groups aim, and both facet could have gained it, but Massey, taking part in for Downingtown Easts rival MacPherson of Downingtown West got the game-winner.

Massey has played club hockey for MacPherson, so probably rival is not the proper term below.

I enjoy [MacPherson], Massey reported. She was my club mentor for a minor little bit. Shes tremendous wonderful. There is no lousy blood or anything among the rivals.

This was this kind of a enjoyment matter to be a aspect of, MacPherson claimed. It was seriously entertaining for the ladies to get one last chance to participate in with every other and see elite players. We commenced connecting effectively with every other in the 2nd game. Heading to extra time was just thrilling for each teams obviously, its good to come out with a win, but it was a pleasurable weekend in general.

Due to the fact each crew was filled with gamers from approximately the similar location, the dynamic of rivalries changed for the weekend. All people, it seemed, put earlier battles powering and experienced enjoyable for the weekend.

It was complete of enjoyment Rice claimed, and not just because she experienced the guidance of her long term higher education teammates. There was no force on us. We could just go out and do our capabilities have been not employed to accomplishing. We could just go out and have entertaining with no strain. Have been all listed here to get improved.

*Athletes on Team Hershey and Lancaster battle for the ball in the initially PA Subject Hockey Senior Cup Championship Match on March 24, 2024. Photograph: John Pavoncello

Lancasters goalie, Hannah Popolis of Ephrata, echoed Rices feedback.

It was tremendous exciting, mentioned Popolis, a James Madison College recruit. All of us performed for rival colleges. We had to appear collectively. It was enjoyment coming collectively and symbolizing the Lancaster-Lebanon League. Coach Briggs explained that this was a incredibly proficient team. We were being, also. I consider if we experienced an additional pair minutes (in regulation), we could have ended it in regulation possibly way. It was a excellent time taking part in once more. We were being very aggressive.

Like all coaches, Briggs did not have a lot of time to get the job done with her workforce. She just made sure that anyone acquired in, competed and experienced a very good time. The previous of those a few objectives was effortless.

This is an great event, she mentioned. It was so pleasurable for these ladies to enjoy collectively. They hadnt performed collectively just before, almost certainly at all. To see them come jointly swiftly and mould collectively was awesome to watch. Our staff, alongside with Hersheys workforce, was super-gifted. It was a excellent weekend of hockey.

In some techniques, the gamers ended up utilized to this form of party. Most, possibly all, of them enjoy on club teams with high faculty opponents. Blood rivals a single period, teammates the future.

It was actually entertaining, Massey stated. When I obtained the invitation, my close friends and I ended up seriously enthusiastic. It was really great coming with each other with all these women that are dedicated to Division I, Division II, Division III schools. We just played and experienced enjoyment to finish off our high school occupation.

The girls ended up all super great. We all clicked really effectively. At to start with, we didnt know everyones participating in design, but as it went on, we naturally turned a crew. This was a whole lot extra pleasurable. There wasnt seriously any pressure. You just played with other men and women who preferred discipline hockey.

Tim Shoemaker is a freelance writer.