Vol. LXIV, No. 42
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
(Photo by Bill Allen/NJ SportAction)
TOP PRODUCER: Princeton University womens hockey star Danielle DiCesare heads up the ice in action last season. Junior forward DiCesare led the Tigers in scoring last year with 27 points on 11 goals and 16 assists and figures to be a pivotal player for Princeton this winter. The Tigers open their 2010-11 season by playing at Northeastern on October 22 and at Providence on October 23.
After enduring a 2009-10 season characterized by uneven play and some dispiriting losses, Princeton University womens ice hockey head coach Jeff Kampersal is espousing a basic formula to get more consistency out of his team in the upcoming campaign.
We need to be the hammer, not the nail, said Kampersal, whose team went 13-14-4 overall last winter and was swept 2-0 by Harvard in the quarterfinals of the ECAC Hockey playoffs. The key is focus. We need to work on being mentally ready to play every night, worrying about ourselves and not the other team.
To help increase his players focus, Kampersal has racheted up the intensity in preseason training.
In his famous pre-game speech to the U.S. mens hockey team before its clash with the Soviet Union at the 1980 Olympics, head coach Herb Brooks reminded his players that great moments are born from great opportunities.
This summer, former Hun School standout Gina Fiori listened to Brooks speech as she pursued a great opportunity of her athletic career, trying to make the Fairfield University womens soccer team as a walk-on.
While Fiori was a four-year starter at outside defense for Hun, her dream of playing in college seemed to be unrealistic as she didnt draw much interest on the recruiting trail.
Although Lido Guzman wasnt a headliner for the Princeton High boys soccer team last season, he was on the field for many crucial moments as the team went undefeated on the way to the Group III state championship.
This fall, the battle-tested Guzman is looking to apply the lessons he learned from being involved in those high stakes contests.
I know that the coach and the team relies on me a lot now for my experience, said Guzman. I am trying to do the best I can.
Last week against Ewing, Guzman gave PHS some of his best play of the season, contributing a goal and an assist as the Little Tigers topped the Blue Devils 4-0.
Jacqui Stevens was able to laugh about it afterwards but it wasnt funny at the time.
With the Princeton Day School girls soccer team trailing Hill 1-0 midway through the second half last Wednesday, PDS senior star Stevens squandered a golden opportunity to tie the contest when she took a ball inside the box and booted it well over the net and the trees behind the goal.
Apparently my depth perception is off, said Stevens with a chuckle as she reflected on her misfire. Down there I get a little bit of happy feet.
After PDS tied the game at 1-1, Stevens used her feet to make the Panthers happy in the last minute of regulation as she slotted a ball to junior forward Janie Smukler who proceeded to knock it home for the game-winner in a 2-1 victory.
It wasnt a tournament game or a contest against a local prep rival but Lara Agnew was at a fever pitch.
It was Senior Day for Agnew and her classmates on the Stuart Country Day School field hockey team last Friday and they desperately wanted a win as they hosted South Hunterdon.
We have definitely been waiting for this moment for a long time; I know I have since freshman year, said star midfielder Agnew, whose fellow seniors on the squad include Whitney Charbonneau, Kristi Hallowell, Bethan Johnson, Katherine Keith, Tiara Little, Kate Neubert, and Elisabeth Darnell.
I have seen the seniors playing these games and I have always wanted to be the one jumping up and screaming.
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