Field Hockey: Coming in Clutch


Cora Bainbridge

State High playing Chambersburg on the new Memorial Field, Monday September 28.

Cora Bainbridge, Sports Manager

Field hockey became the first team to play on the new Memorial Field, while also being the first contact team to compete on Monday, Sept. 28. Contact sports were not allowed to compete during the weeks of the district being fully remote. When the district went back to its hybrid format, the field hockey team was ready to play and kick off their season hopefully with a win. 

“Being the first team to play on the new memorial field, and having it be on our first PIAA game of the season, was very surreal,” State High junior and field hockey varsity starter Emma Barlett said. 

Barlett was a starter for Monday’s home game, helping the team get the win against Chambersburg with the final score being 5-1. This game could not have been possible without the board allowing these athletes to play. As stated in the official 2020 Fall Sports Health and Safety Plan, when students are allowed to be in school, contact sports will be able to play. These guidelines were put in place to make sure that these athletes would be able to play safely and efficiently.

“I think our team did a tremendous job maintaining and following the guidelines put in place by both PIAA and the school district,” Barlett said.

Alongside this winning team came a new head coach, Sharon Herlocher. 

“I believe that Coach Herlocher led us and taught us how to overcome adversity, which led us to our victory on Monday night,” Barlett said.

Herlocher was able to lead her team through the ever-changing sports guidelines, knowing how to successfully lead her team to the victory. Coach Herlocher pushed this team to their victory in their game against Chambersburg, and hopefully will continue to do so throughout the season.

Not only was field hockey the first contact sport to play a game, they were also the first team to play on the newly renovated Memorial Field. Memorial Field was a year-long project that started during the summer of 2019, leaving most of the sports during the 2019-2020 school year playing on the South Track or the North Field. Field hockey left a great first impression on the field, christening it on Monday with the monstrous win over Chambersburg.

“The energy physically and mentally while playing on Memorial is an incredible moment to experience,” Barlett said. “I am very proud to be part of a program that follows, respects, and represents the COVID guidelines put in place.” 

State High Field hockey pulled out a win, despite this ever-changing environment. They would not have been able to have this incredible experience without following the safety protocol put in place by the district. The district allowed these athletes to play in a safe environment. Field hockey solidified the idea that the other full-contact fall sports will be able to have a safe season and possibly play their seasons in their entirety.