By: Alex Thomas
They say you have to lose to know how to win, that you have to learn the tough lessons of sports.
Right now, the Springfield College field hockey team is doing exactly that.
After the first six games, the Pride have a 1-5 record to this point in the season, but four of those losses have come by just one goal, including an overtime decision at the start of the year. Those losses are the toughest to take, but are the ones you learn the most from.
“I do think that these games will make us stronger and will pay off as the season progresses,” said head coach Melissa Sharpe.
It’s a sentiment that the coach and the players share, that these tough losses will help them come crunch time later in the season.
The Pride opened the season with a tough overtime loss at home to Brockport in the Zenaty Invitational.
Springfield would eventually beat Plymouth State the next day, but haven’t tasted victory since then.
The Pride lost a pair of heart-breaking games on the road, dropping a 6-5 decision to Keene State, followed by a 2-1 loss to Connecticut College. Upon returning home, the Pride then fell to MIT 3-2 this past Saturday.
Heading into this week, the Pride’s tough luck continued on Tuesday night when they fell 8-2 to Amherst on the road.
That said, the record isn’t discouraging Springfield, who firmly believes they can turn things around.
“All of our games have been very close, which has made our losses a bit more frustrating,” said senior Kelly Gallo. “I feel that our team has great talent and with some minor changes, we will turn our record around.”
Gallo is serving as the co-captain for the team this season, and has taken up a leadership role for the team. The Westfield, Mass. native also has been one of the Pride’s best offensive weapons to this point.
This potential that the team sees will have to show itself come NEWMAC play, which begins on Saturday, September 28, at Babson College.
“We have minor areas that need improvement and I believe we will be one of the top teams in the conference,” said Sharpe.
“Our goal for the season is to win NEWMACs. It is a very realistic goal for us as we know we can play with all of the teams in and out of our league,” added Gallo.
The Pride haven’t had the best start to their season, but they aren’t letting the record bother them.
They have a plan to use the slow start as a reminder of how tough it can be to win, and as a stepping stone to what could very well be a successful season.