LINCOLNDALE, N.Y -- Somers had such an excellent and enjoyable first year led by varsity field hockey coach Colleen Carney in 2011, the girls could not wait to take that momentum into 2012.
“This year, we want to make it a continuation of what we learned last year,” said senior and captain Megan Sweeney, in her third varsity year.
Somers embraced Carney, a former Lakeland High School and Sacred Heart University great along with former Walter Panas great, Jaime Irving, the varsity assistant coach.
“Coach Carney knows so much about the game and we knew that she learned from coach Sarsen at Lakeland, who is a great coach,” Sweeney said. “We were all excited to have them as our coaches and the fact that coach Carney was asked to play field hockey overseas was a big deal to us.”
Sweeney and fellow captains Christina Jocelyn and Kasey Rubenstein, are joined by seven other returning seniors -- Taylor Borgelt, Kristen Bugoni, Danielle Colavito, Meghan Couture, Emily Dalton, Brittany Lehman and Elena Semenza. Sisters Emma and Tara Schurr are the lone returning juniors.
Having 12 players back has the coaches and players excited about this season. With the returning experience, Somers has been able to accomplish more in practice with advanced drills.
“My excitement started when we were playing winter league in Brewster,” Sweeney said. “We’ve all really improved and we feel we've picked it up where we ended last year.”
Somers showed it was excited and prepared to go on the first day of practice. Sweeney said the team came into camp in very good shape and the attention to practice over the summer honed everyone’s skills.
Carney, like her mentor, Lakeland field hockey coach Sharon Sarsen, will challenge her team this season with a tougher schedule. Somers will play John Jay-East Fishkill and R.C. Ketcham, as well as Lakeland and Panas.
“Coach believes in us,” said Sweeney of Carney. “We are playing Lakeland so we will be up for the challenge. The only way to get better is by playing the top teams.”
Somers will open the season with its tournament Wednesday and Sept. 7.