Field hockey: an unconventional sport

Players discuss paths to, interest in field hockey

The field hockey team has officially kicked off their 2019 season. Field hockey is fairly popular at HHS, but how these players found their way to the sport is even more intriguing.

Field hockey is not a common sport amongst children in this area. According to Sports Rec, many play basketball, teeball, football and soccer when young. 

[Field hockey is] really similar [to soccer], and I thought that I could use the skills from soccer and put it into field hockey.

— Francesca Pastizzo

Photo by Sara Shohoud
Sophomore Claire Flickner practices on the field with the varsity team wearing her HHS soccer jersey.

Mallory Mitten, a sophomore on the team, said she did not initially intend to try out for field hockey. 

“I originally play soccer and then as an incoming freshman, I looked at the list of sports and [a senior] recommended field hockey to me,” Mitten said, “and so I tried out.”

Freshman Francesca Pastizzo and sophomore Claire Flickner both also found field hockey through soccer. 

“[Field hockey is] really similar [to soccer],” Pastizzo said, “and I thought that I could use the skills from soccer and put it into field hockey.” 

Although many players on the team have a background in soccer, it’s certainly not the case for everyone. Junior Sanjana Shankar said she has been playing field hockey since she was very young.

“My parents played a lot when they were younger and they heard that there were some camps going on in the area,” Shankar said, “and they decided to put me in field hockey.”

From there, Shankar said she played all the way through middle school and decided to try out for the field hockey team at HHS. 

Sophomore Sehej Shoker also said she began playing field hockey at a young age. 

“I was actually forced to when I was younger by my dad because in Punjab, field hockey is a very popular sport,” Shoker said. “So all these groups of dads came together and said ‘hey let’s get these kids and throw them on the field.’” 

Regardless of the path they took to get there, teammates agree that playing the sport is a great opportunity to meet new people and build lasting friendships.

“I wanted to meet people as an incoming freshman before school actually started,” Mitton said. “[It’s] a great way to meet friends because it’s the first sports season.”