IR field hockey takes another blow

Progressively improving teamwork and utilizing that teamwork don’t seem to be paying off yet for the Indian River field hockey team. After falling to Dover in their season-opener a week ago in the last two minutes of the game and letting a second goal slip in last Thursday to give Seaford a 2-1 victory, the Lady Indians’ unfortunate streak continued on Tuesday, Sept. 16, when Milford sealed a win in the last minutes of overtime, after a scoreless regulation.

Coastal Point • Ryan Saxton: An Indian River field hockey player prepares to hit the ball downfield in IR’s 2-1 loss against Seaford on Tuesday, Sept. 16.Coastal Point • Ryan Saxton
An Indian River field hockey player prepares to hit the ball downfield in IR’s 2-1 loss against Seaford on Tuesday, Sept. 16.

Head coach Julene Williamson, though disheartened, was pleased with the improvements the girls have been showing on the field.

“These are tough losses,” she said. “The majority of games come right down to end. On the lighter side, I think our team is playing well. Unfortunately, what we think should have happened didn’t happen.”

“In a game with a 2-0 score, it can look like the team ran away with the score, but we’re still playing well,” she added.

Milford, a team that has seen a returning spot in the playoffs the past couple years, was definitely going to be a contender for Indian River.

“We can definitely compete with anyone, as long as we play our game,” said Williamson. “There are some things we should have done that may have made a difference winning or losing today, but the girls played with their heart, and that’s all you can ask for.”

Unlike most sports, filed hockey overtime requires coaches to select seven players, a considerably smaller number of players to cover the field than the traditional 11.

“It’s not too common to see a lot of overtimes in field hockey,” said Williamson. “It’s tough when you only have seven girls running the field after most just played the entire 60 minutes.

The Lady Indians hoped to improve this past Thursday (after Coastal Point press deadline) as they traveled to Delmar, a team that’s managed to shutout the Indians the past two years. They will face Cape Henlopen next Tuesday, Sept. 23, for an evening game and play host to Laurel on Thursday, Sept. 25, at 4 p.m.

“The girls are doing everything in practice that we ask of them,” said Williamson, “and they’re bringing that to the game and trying their hardest. We just have to keep that consistent play up. The team just has to, whether it’s 60 minutes or 70 minutes, they can’t stop. We need to play our game 100 percent of the time instead of 80 or 90 percent.”