The UConn field hockey team responded to their first defeat since 2016 by shutting out Providence 3-0, but the Huskies lost their Senior Day matchup against No. 5 Princeton on Sunday afternoon, 5-2. Head coach Nancy Stevens said the team will use this as motivation as they continue their season.
“It is interesting to note that at the Final Four last year,” Stevens said. “We went in undefeated, but North Carolina had five losses, Maryland had six losses, but they fought through. To have the backbone and the fortitude to lose that many games and they fought through to the Final Four. So, good teams use these losses as learning opportunities, and we feel we are a good team.”
This was the first time that the No. 3 Huskies (11-2, 4-0 The American) have lost back-to-back home games since 2005. On a day where the team honored their seniors, it is clear they will be looked upon to lead the younger players and remain level headed.
“Absolutely,” Stevens said of trusting the seniors to help keep confidence high. “Because the coaches aren’t in the locker room. So, they have to manage the locker room and keep people positive.”
Senior captain Amanda Collins, who has the third-most points scored on the team (22), said that the team is focused on cleaning up miscues and sharpening what they already do well. The Huskies are looking forward to their next matchup, Friday night against Villanova at home and Sunday against No. 1 North Carolina.
Stevens said the senior class has been nothing short of phenomenal, including their productivity in the classroom.
“I am looking over at these banners,” Stevens said. “I mean they have done everything we’ve asked them, three consecutive Final Fours, a National Championship. They won all the Big East trophies…they couldn’t have done much more for our program and the University of Connecticut.”
Collins said that being at UConn for the past four years has exceeded her expectations and she is looking forward to continuing her final season.
“These last four years have been valuable,” Collins said. “We’ve definitely learned skills that we don’t necessarily learn being a regular student here at UConn. Today was nice to be recognized for our achievements, but we are going forward and looking toward the rest of the season.”
Michael Logan is the sports editor for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at email@example.com.