Girls’ field hockey plays defensively, racks up wins
According to coach Lauren O’Brien, the girls’ varsity field hockey team at Old Rochester Regional High School doesn’t have a “star player,” instead they “have a wide spread of who’s contributing and who’s scoring.”
The team has seen six wins, two ties and four losses so far this year — something that O’Brien attributes to the team’s knack at playing defensively.
“We’re predominantly known to be a strong defensive team,” said O’Brien, “I do feel as though we are sticking to what we are known for this year.”
The four losses, said O’Brien, came early in the season. She added that after an early loss against Fall River’s Durfee High School, the second game against them resulted in a tie.
During a game against Lakeville’s Apponequet Regional High School on Oct. 21, the Bulldogs showed off their defensive skills by not allowing the Lakeville team to score a single point. Ending the game with a 1-0 win.
O’Brien said that one strategy her team is working on is “self starting the ball” after a foul is called. This allows a field hockey team to gain an advantage over the opposing team who hasn’t had a chance to set up a defense, she said.
But for O’Brien, her job as a coach happens both on and off the field. She said her favorite part of coaching girls field hockey is getting to know her players as more than just athletes.
“You can’t teach all students the same way,” said O’Brien. “You really have to get to know your players and how to talk to the player and what motivates the player.”
She added that being able to connect with her players has given her the opportunity to “push the limits to have them grow, not only as a person, but as an athlete.”
As a seventh grade science teacher at ORR Junior High School, O’Brien said she has known many of her players since before they joined the field hockey team in high school.
“I’ve known these girls for like six years and I’ve gotten to see how they transform from preteens to now,” she said. “Being with them for that long is a special thing.”