GHS field hockey team expects to fill voids, defend title

By Steve Smith - Staff Writer
Glastonbury - posted Fri., Sep. 9, 2011
GHS attacker Leah Zavalick takes some shots on goal during practice on Sept. 7. Photos by Steve Smith.
GHS attacker Leah Zavalick takes some shots on goal during practice on Sept. 7. Photos by Steve Smith.

The state co-champion Glastonbury High School varsity field hockey team plans to defend (and hopefully take sole ownership of) its title this season, using a mix of veteran starters, players new to varsity, and last season’s reserves getting a shot at a starting role. The team returns starting attackers Ashleigh Allen, Courtney Peterson and Leah Zavalick, midfielder Liz Caporale, and starting goalkeeper Dana Dhami, but will have several new faces on defense and at midfield.

“It’s an interesting group,” said coach Maureen Perkins. “They’re working well together. We’re kind of figuring out who does what, and how to fill spaces. So far, it’s been interesting.”

Perkins said the six players lost to graduation were not only significant in number, but also in caliber. “At least three of them had been three-year starters,” she said. “The people that we lost did amazing things, so it’s the space, but also the experience. They were just doing it for just a really long time. We have the opportunity now for kids to take hold of those vacated positions.”

Perkins said the team’s group mentality is to focus on a return trip to the state final. “Every year, that’s the goal,” she said. ”We were undefeated in the conference last year, and we’re looking to do that again. We want to show that it wasn’t a one-time thing for us. This is something that we can sustain.”

With perennially strong Farmington, Avon and Simsbury on the schedule again, the road to the post-season is a familiar and challenging one, but the players’ mindset and camaraderie is also on par. “The older kids who have been here have been helpful - explaining how things work,” Perkins said. “They all get along and like each other, and they all support each other. As a group, they want to do well, and whoever’s going to help do that - that’s what’s important.” For a complete schedule, visit the website


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