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The Field Hockey Family

By Lily ’22

Student Ambassador Blog Field Hockey Post: The Field Hockey Family  

When I was in 6th grade, I received one of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever gotten about Harvard-Westlake, which is ironic, because I didn’t even go here yet. One of my older friends was in her first year here and had recently joined the field hockey team. She had such an amazing experience that she told me to promise her I would join if I got in. For some reason, I said yes, and now I’m in my fifth field hockey season. 

The field hockey program is one of the strongest athletic programs at Harvard-Westlake. The varsity team has been undefeated and the Los Angeles Field Hockey Association champions for the past three years. In addition to varsity, there is typically a 7th grade team, an 8th grade team, a freshman team, and a junior varsity team, so there is truly room for every person at any skill level. The teams on both campuses all interact with each other so we get to know other players and all the coaches very well. Our amazing coaches on the field and the great coaches in the weight room for strength training all seek to help us improve the most we can. 

Not only is field hockey amazing athletically, but it is truly amazing for having fun and making friends, especially as a new student at Harvard-Westlake. One of the highlights of the high school season is Family Day, where each student is placed into a family that is led by a senior. We compete against other families in different competitions to win field hockey key chains. These competitions include scrimmages, other field hockey games, and, my personal favorite, creating a team name, cheer, and dance. As the finale, all the families perform their cheers for the other families and it is an amazing bonding experience. We finish the night with pizza and cake. One of my favorite aspects of “Family Day is that the families stay the same every year, with the addition of new freshmen, so we can maintain connections over several years. Another fun experience is getting In-N-Out on the way home after almost every away game we have. Our team swarms the In-N-Out with orders of fries and milkshakes, and there’s almost always a photo op with our food that turns out some of my favorite pictures. We are able to get to know each other on and off the field, and I’m so happy that our team has been able to stay connected even without our normal season. I think this fact just shows how amazing the bonds we create are. We’re able to form them across different grades, friend groups, and interests. 

Even now, amid all the craziness right now, field hockey has remained one of the brightest lights in my everyday life. We’ve been able to resume practices with strict social distance rules. We can still do drills and play games as usual since field hockey mainly consists of individual dribbling and passing. Coming back to school with my teammates every Friday is like a reward for finishing a long week of school and I feel so lucky that I’m able to continue the activity that brings me so much joy. 

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Tags: , Last modified: September 23, 2021