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Photo taken by Caroline Gerke

     The No. 20 nationally ranked University of Lynchburg field hockey team won their fifth straight match on Sat., Oct. 12 against Shenandoah University in overtime by a score of 2 to 1.  In all five of these past matchups, the goals have been decided by less than two goals.  

     Third-year player and two-year starting goalkeeper, Laurel Nicks remarks, “We’ve been in a couple close games but always end up staying focused in the game.  We just try to keep each other calm and collected during games that are much closer than we’d like. It’s really like a family in the regards that we know how each other thinks and we know what each person needs in that moment.  We know that some people need to be reassured that they’re doing well and that we have each other’s backs, some need to be yelled at, and others just need to be reminded to take a breath and relax.” Nicks has been having a standout season in goal for the Hornets, earning the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) distinction of Player of the Week last week.

     The ability of this team to keep grinding and stay mentally and physically resilient throughout these close games is a testament to the culture of this team.  With reference to the community, family-like culture built by this program, third-year midfielder and 2018 Third-Team All-ODAC player, Emma Strouse insists, “Our season this year has been focused on positivity and inclusiveness between everyone both on and off the field. We really want to support one another in everything we do, and the best games we’ve had so far have been the ones where we play united and give that last extra effort to help each other out on the field.”

     Third-year forward and 2018 NFHCA First-Team All-South Region player, Jackie Lerro said, “With seniors leaving and new players coming in, it is sometimes hard to adjust to new playing styles. This year, we have tremendous talent and, at this point in ODAC play, we are 3-0 which is absolutely wonderful. I am really excited to see what the rest of the season has in store for us.”

     The team’s next two home games  are against two ODAC rivals: Wed., Oct. 16 against Virginia Wesleyan University at 7 p.m. and Sat., Oct. 19 against Eastern Mennonite University at 2:30 p.m.  The Saturday game is both Homecoming and Senior Day for the Lady Hornets.  

     See you there on Shellenberger Field cheering on your fellow Hornets!


Picture Caption:  Team celebrates following their close but huge win over No. 2 nationally ranked Rowan University on Sun., Sept. 29 at Liberty University Field Hockey Complex.  Photo retrieved from the University of Lynchburg Sports Website, taken by Caroline Gerke of Lynchburg Hornets Sports Network (LHSN).