Freshmen shine on field hockey’s offensive line October 21, 2023 — by Anamika Anand Photo by Angela TanFreshman left forward Evelyn Williams dribbles the ball across the field during a game against Monta Vista on Sept. 13. Freshmen Evelyn Williams and Giselle Adams did not expect to make varsity, but they proved to be essential to the team’s success. As the clock ticked down during the varsity field hockey team’s senior night game against Santa Clara on Oct. 18, the Bruins tied the score 3-3 during the fourth quarter. The Falcons battled all the way through, putting forth a few coordinated offensive attacks until Santa Clara slipped through their defense and scored in the fourth minute of overtime, resulting in a disappointing 4-3 loss. As of the game, they stood in fourth place in the El Camino League with an 8-4 record under the guidance of head coach Sam Ng. The team had two games left: against Presentation at home on Oct. 23 and Lynbrook away on Oct. 25. (The Falcon was unable to cover them because of printing deadlines.) As demonstrated by their inconsistent results at the start of the season, the team wasn’t clicking on or off the field, according to co-captain Emma Green. However, through team bonding activities like boba runs on Tpumps Tuesday or upholding their Secret Santa-style snack gifting rituals on game days, members grew more comfortable as a team, contributing to a mid-season comeback. After more intense practices, the Falcons went on a five-game win streak before falling to Santa Clara. “In our first game we were really disconnected,” Green said. “Since then, we have really gotten to know each other and we’re able to communicate if there’s something we need to do better [in games and practices] without taking it to heart.” Another factor contributing to the team’s success is the strength of their freshman players, who have significantly contributed to the team’s accomplishments. Two rising stars on the team, freshmen left and right forwards Evelyn Williams and Giselle Adams, have played a key role in the Falcons’ offense and have kept up well with the pace of the team. “It’s a big deal for freshmen to be on varsity,” Green said. “At the beginning [Williams and Adams] were nervous, but they’ve definitely become more comfortable. They really help our team by getting the ball up and into the goal.” Williams started playing field hockey last year for the Redwood Middle School team because she wanted to try out something new, and she took a liking to it. Adams also started field hockey last year, following in the footsteps of her sister, Class of ‘23 alumna Georgia Adams. Having little experience, both freshmen did not expect to make the varsity team. Though they were happy to make the team, they were also nervous about how they would do. “The first few practices I felt like I was doing so badly, so I was really surprised [to be put on varsity],” Williams said. “I was also kind of nervous that I’d mess up, but everyone’s so nice, and I definitely feel supported even when I make a mistake.” With more confidence and a great experience on the team this year, both freshmen plan to play next year as well. “I thought I wasn’t going to enjoy it as much [because there were so few freshmen on the team], but that doesn’t really matter and it’s been really fun,” Adams said. “It’s a different vibe than other competitive sports; [field hockey] feels more like we’re working for each other.” Tags: field hockey, freshman About the contributorsAnamika AnandAnamika Anand, Class of '24, is an Entertainment Editor and previously Graphics Manager for The Falcon. She most enjoys covering the entertainment industry, local cultural events, and the stories of underrepresented communities and individuals. Throughout high school, she has gained much experience in journalism through programs like Northwestern's Medill Cherubs and the School of the New York Times, along with writing for The Outlook, a local publication based in the West Valley area. Outside of journalism, she is in the Media Arts Program and also likes listening to music, doing nail art, and fueling her mocha frappuccino addiction.