Photo by Andrew Katsampes
Skyhawks end the season with a trip Final Four as they look ahead to bigger and better things
Under the guidance of third year head coach Shelly Morris, the Stonehill Field Hockey team took another step forward after a successful 2009 campaign with a trip to the NCAA semifinals for the second year in a row in the 2010 season.
The Skyhawks finished with a record of 16-7 (9-1 in the Northeast-10 conference) and earned trips to the Northeast-10 Conference Championship and the NCAA tournament. They also got to host a first round NCAA tournament game against American International, in which they came away with a 1-0 victory and earned a trip to Louisville to face another fellow conference foe, UMass-Lowell, in the Final Four.
Overall, Morris was pleased with how the season turned out.
"I thought we did really well," she said. "We had to battle through some injuries and we had to persevere through some other things during the course of the season, but I thought our team was able to overcome those obstacles and we wound up making another trip to the Final Four."
The leadership of the senior class also helped the team persevere through some difficult times and left their mark in closing out their four year careers.
Photo by Andrew Katsampes
Goalie Courtney Osier started in all 23 contests this year and compiled a record of 16-7 to go along with her seven shutouts, while fellow classmate Courtney Foley helped her cause on the backend and was a member of the first team in the Northeast-10 while earning Northeast-10 Defensive Player of the Year honors and midfielder Lindsay Pinkham was also a member of the first team as she finished her season with nine goals and six assists.
"We had some great leadership from our senior class this year without a doubt," said Morris about the seniors. "Courtney Foley and Lindsay Pinkham were two outstanding players this year and their leadership abilities will be missed while Courtney Osier started every game since she's been there and was really a force behind the net and Laura Noce, Lauren Gifford and Michaela Deasy really had great senior seasons as well.
"There were a lot of great personalities from the senior class and it will be tough replacing six great student athletes. I couldn't have asked for more from our senior class."
The team's involvement in the community should also be noticed. While they've gotten a ton of support from the town of Easton, they've also been helping out with the Easton Youth Field Hockey league and just last night they hosted a fundraiser event at the 99s.
And even though their first round game against American International was held when mostly everyone on campus headed home, the team still got a good crowd who saw the Skyhawks come away with a 1-0 victory.
"The timing was tough because it was the Tuesday before Thanksgiving and mostly everyone on campus left to go home for the next few days," Morris said. "But overall I thought we still had a lot of support from the community and I was very impressed with that.
"We have a nice connection with the Easton Youth Field Hockey league and they showed up to a lot of the events this year. Overall I'm very pleased to be a part of the community."
While it's still early to tell what lies ahead for next season, Morris believes the team has a bright future. The Skyhawks will have to replace an excellent senior class, but a very good recruiting class will be coming in to what will hopefully be another successful campaign in the 2011 season.
"We're going to have a different look, but overall we should still be pretty good," said Morris. "We have a strong recruiting class coming in and I think the future is only going to get brighter."