After starting the season with three close losses, the Hun School field hockey team appeared to be turning the corner as it hosted Princeton Day School last Thursday.
Building on a 1-0 win over WW/P-S three days earlier, Hun led the Panthers 1-0 at halftime in the annual meeting of cross-town rivals.
But in the second half, PDS scored three unanswered goals to pull out a 3-1 win over the Raiders.
As a result of the setback, Hun head coach Kathy Quirk went back to the drawing board.
“I thought that we were playing extremely well,” said Quirk, referring to her team’s first half effort.
“I don’t know what happened in the second half. We seem to get complacent when we get a goal.”
Quirk held an extended post-game session with her team in the wake of the loss.
“We just talked about being more goal hungry,” said Quirk. “We have to be more aggressive in the circle. We knock at the door but we are not scoring enough. One goal is not enough to win games.”
Quirk was happy to get goals from newcomer Julie Fassl in the victory over WW/P-S and from junior Julia Blake in the PDS game.
“Julie is a freshman; she is still young and learning,” said Quirk. “She scored a goal against WW/P-S and I think that gave her confidence. Julia Blake is doing a nice job for us.”
With Hun at 1-4, Quirk is looking for senior captains Francesca Bello, Alex Kane, and Hannah Bettner to get the team on the winning track.
“The kids are working hard,” said Quirk. “I talked to the captains about leadership and leading on and off the field. I need them to light a fire under the team.”
The Raiders have been getting some fiery play from junior goalie Reina Kern, who made 16 saves in the loss to PDS.
“Reina has been doing a nice job,” said Quirk. “She has been getting pounded at times. She is working hard and has to keep positive. I know she is the last person on defense but sometimes the ball is coming through 10 players in front of her.”
With Hun having shown a penchant in recent years for coming through down the stretch, Quirk hopes her team can make another late run.
“I think we do have the potential for that,” said Quirk, whose team plays at Stuart Country Day on October 2 before hosting Springside Academy (Pa.) on October 4, Princeton High on October 5, and Solebury School (Pa.) on October 8.
“I am thinking about making some changes in the lineup. I am looking to get some more speed on the forward line and some gutsiness in the circle.”