Coming off an up-and-down 10–7 season with a 4–3 Ivy League record, the Yale field hockey team is ready to build off its previous seasons for a successful 2019 campaign.
The Bulldogs have improved their record over the last three years, and having retained their potent offense, the Elis are well placed to excel further this year. While the team did lose some solid midfielders who graduated in May, the top three-point scorers from last year are all back, and a great set of first years fill out the roster.
“The team is pumped for this year,” midfielder Théodora Dillman ’22 said. “We are excited about our strong, hardworking class of first years and thankful for our seasoned, dedicated leadership.”
Yale does need to replace the leadership of captain and defender Jackie Kisa ’19 in addition to the contributions of the three other graduating seniors: Marissa Medici ’19, Brooke Reese ’19 and Chaney Kalinich ’19. Medici, a four-time member of the NFHCA National Academic Squad, also leaves a vacuum in the team, as she was arguably the Bulldogs’ best stick-stopper on penalty corners and never missed a single game in her entire NCAA career.
Regardless, Dillman is confident that the team’s returning players, as well as the incoming first years, will be more than enough to build on last season’s success. Dillman, in just her rookie season, tied a team-high six goals — the most of any Ivy rookie — earning Second Team All-Ivy recognition and receiving the team’s player of the year award.
“We are hoping to continue to build on the progress we made throughout the spring and summer,” Dillman said. “We are all so happy to be back together as a team and are eager to see our hard work over the summer translate into success on the field.”
Forward Imogen Davies ’21, who tied for first on the team with six goals last year, also returns to the field this fall. She was second on the team with 15 points and three assists and was the primary inserter on almost every penalty corner. First Team All-Ivy member and newly elected team captain Bridget Condie ’20 is also poised to contribute this fall. In her junior year, she tied for team high with six goals, also leading the Elis’ in points and assists, with 17 and five, respectively.
On the defensive end, Second Team All-Ivy back Holly Jackson ’20 is coming off a successful season in which she played a pivotal role in limiting Yale’s opponents to two or fewer goals in 12 of 17 games. Second Team All-Ivy goalie Sydney Terroso ’21 also returns to the net. She comes into this season with a spectacular .766 career save percentage and an equally impressive 2.01 career goals-against average.
“The team is in a very good spot for our upcoming season,” Terroso said. “After a full summer of preparation we are glad to be back together training.”
The Bulldogs welcome five members of the class of 2023 to the team. Forward Josie Jahng ’23 set her school’s record for goals in a season, and MAX Field Hockey ranked her as a top 100 recruit. Meanwhile, twin sisters Ashley and April Kim ’23 led their high school to its first field hockey state championship.
Last season, the Bulldogs began and ended the campaign strong, with three-game winning streaks bookending the fall. However, after beginning the season 3–0, Yale dropped the next three it played and ultimately only finished with one more win than in 2017.
In spite of the Elis’ shaky 3-3 start to last season, the team went on to win seven of the last 11 games of the season, taking four of the six remaining conference games in the process. When the dust settled, the Bulldogs wound up finishing fourth in the Ancient Eight with a 4–3 record.
Yale will be tested early on in the season when it travels to Virginia to take on Liberty University, before Ivy League play begins against Harvard on Sept. 28.
“I’m really excited for our team this year because we’ve meshed well so far this preseason especially with the newcomers,” Anissa Abboud ’21 said. “We’re just hoping to build on our strengths and win the games we were so close to winning last year and improve our Ivy record more.”
Yale opens its season when it welcomes UMass to Johnson Field on Friday, Sept. 6 at 6 p.m.
Jared Fel | firstname.lastname@example.org