September 9, 2003

DEAR DIARY - Jana Halfon

Sept. 9, 2003

We started off preseason with one goal in mind, one desire, one purpose that would drive us each and every day - Ivy Champs. Through the gauntlet, through two-a-day practices and full-foot blisters, it was this desire that made it all worth it. This would be our year. The best of Yale Field Hockey.

Though we lost to the Greenwich Club Team 3-4, the scrimmage gave us confidence in our ability to play and shut down a high caliber of talent in our opponents. The subsequent scrimmage against the University of Waterloo showed that we could score from a variety of positions and situations, on corners, on one-on-ones, on shots at the top of the circle, resulting in a 7-0 victory. We played a poised, controlled game, and we looked good.

Then came Saturday and the game against Sacred Heart. We entered strong, scoring twice in the first half with goals by Buffy Topp and Meredith Howell. But an all-too familiar situation echoed within the last minutes of the second half. Whether it was a lapse in that initial desire or a failure to follow through, we let our lead slip away, watching the Pioneers celebrate an overtime win on our turf, in front of our fans, at our season opener.

Needless to say, we were not expecting that ending. But the Sacred Heart loss awoke us to a reality that we had perhaps overlooked. This was a new year, a new season, with new teams and new talent, new potential and new upsets. Sacred Heart was not the same team we faced last year, and for that matter, neither were we. Winning was not something to be expected; we needed to earn it, every second, every half, every game. Tomorrow we start again, our invincibility cracked, but our minds and hearts ready to show the nation that we are indeed a new team. We are a better team, and damned if we are not going to prove it.

Here we go...