Field Hockey Off To Hot Start

Terry RogersHeadlines, Milford Headline Story, Sports

By Kevin Eickman


MHS Field Hockey is off to a hot start for the 2023 season

Over the last few years, one of the key areas needing improvement has been finishing in the circle. While the Buccaneers had been getting the ball in the scoring area, finishing has been a problem. While Milford is only three games into the season and though it is early, it has definitely improved in the area. After three games, the Bucs stand at 3-0 while outscoring their opponents 20-2. While two of the games had been against teams a bit underwhelming, the finishing has been much improved. “We have been working very hard on scoring and it has improved. We still have a great deal of work ahead of us, but we are heading in the right direction,” coach Andrea McPike said.

While you need to score to win a game, you also need character, and this Buccaneer team might just have it. With five seniors on the squad, Milford has a mixture of leadership, enthusiasm and accountability. This became evident in the Buccaneers’ home opener against rival Lake Forest. After trailing in the first half 1-0, Milford would take little time equalizing as senior Madisyn Hitchens scored less than two minutes into the third quarter.

Milford would then gain the lead as senior Catlin Cromer would score with just under five minutes remaining in the third quarter. While it looked as if Milford was ready to take control, Lake would not go away quietly as it scored with just 45 seconds remaining in the quarter to equalize.

Following a scoreless, tense fourth quarter, the game entered sudden death overtime. It was there that Milford demonstrated another trait, character. “The girls knew that they should have already been headed home with a win. They got together and said they were going to settle the issue right now.” McPike stated. That would be exactly what they would do as senior Erin Dunlap would score just 34 seconds into the period for the victory.

Milford’s next two wins would be on the road, with a 9-0 triumph at Appoquinimink and 8-0 at Sussex Tech. Scoring 17 goals in two games is difficult, speaking with Hitchens, a team captain, she attributed the quick start to the team’s togetherness. “There is no drama on this team, it is all about doing your job and helping your teammate do their job better as well. This is all about being a team, a family. That is just what we are, a family.”

Another element that presented itself in back-to-back shutouts is the defense’s commitment to improve. Speaking with senior captain Carley Mackert she stated that the defense can be attributed to one thing “Getting better. Our goal is to get better every practice, every game, every chance we get. This is a long season, so we have a lot to get better at.”

Milford will have some tough games ahead and will need to keep on improving if they want to get to the next level. “This team has put in so much work, we are one of the smaller teams in terms of players so conditioning is a big thing for us. Everyone worked hard over the summer, put in the effort and needs to keep doing that if we want to compete against the top-level programs. I believe this team has the heart to do that, I look forward to seeing how we respond as we face some very challenging opponents in the future.” McPike concluded.


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