Women’s field hockey: Momentum a key to Beavers’ season

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UMF's Leah St. Laurent brings the ball down field during a during a scrimmage at Prescott Field in Farmington.

By Tony Blasi, Sports Editor

There are six seniors who remember well when the University of Maine at Farmington copped the 2016 North Atlantic Conference championship with a 3-2 victory over Wells College and finished 13-5 last season.

UMF head coach Cyndi Pratt, who is will be walking the sidelines for her 14th season, is hoping those seniors’ enthusiasm and the momentum from last season’s performance will steer the Beavers back to the postseason and perhaps another NAC title.

“We had a great season in 2016 and will build from our success,” Pratt said. “We will continue to work hard and improve as a team and individuals every single day.”

Pratt take comfort in knowing that many of her players have experience.

“Our players have played in a lot of big games and do not have any fear,” Pratt said. “We prepare extremely hard to reach our potential and feel, if we work hard in practice, we will have the opportunity to play our best on game day.”

She will be relying on her veterans to produce another spectacular year despite an away schedule that could be taxing for the Beavers.

“Senior Emmah Spahr— 2016 NAC Player of the Year —scored 19 goals last year. (She) plays forward,” Pratt said. “She is always in the right place at the right time and has a natural ability to put the ball in the net.”

UMF’s Leah St. Laurent brings the ball down field during a during a scrimmage at Prescott Field in Farmington.

(Tony Blasi/Franklin Journal)

“Senior Carly Raymond, forward, is a solid player. (She) scored 10 goals last year (and is) a tireless worker.

Lee-Anne Greenleaf, a senior defender, (has been a) starter all four years. (She) is one of the anchors of our defense, a smart player (and was a) NAC Tournament MVP in 2016. Sarita Crandall, senior, solidifies our midfield (and is) extremely versatile.”

Of course, the Beavers are already thinking conference championship.

“We have a very balanced conference, on any given day any team can beat another team,” Pratt said. “We have to play our best each conference game to get the results we want.

“(Our) outlook is optimistic. Our goal is to win a conference championship every year.”

The University of Maine at Farmington field hockey team is ready for another season.

(Tony Blasi/Franklin Journal)

The University of Maine at Farmington field hockey players battle in front of the net during a scrimmage at Prescott Field in Farmington.

(Tony Blasi/Franklin Journal)

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