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STUDENT-ATHLETE QUARANTINE Q/A

Varsity Field Hockey's Meghan Pastino (3/12/21)

What were your main goals for yourself and as a team this year?

CC: Well I'm a goalkeeper so I feel like going into this season I understand that, that position is the last line of defense, and so knowing that is important so I am able to support everyone that’s in front of me and that would probably have been my main goal for the season. Another goal would also be that I’m someone that everyone can count on to be a wall for the defense and a leading hand that they can come up to as an upperclassman and captain on and off the field

As a goalie, do you think you have a different perspective when it comes to game time and why?

CC: Definitely, I feel like I’m pretty lucky as a goalie because I have eyes on the entire field and because my purpose is so specific, I really only have to take action when the ball is in my little section, so I spend a lot more of the game communicating with my team then taking active action. This had made me into a really positive communicator on the field because I know that my voice carries the weight that my body doesn't when I’m in the cage, and so knowing that for game time I try to be really focused, make sure I’m up to speed on the rules and know more about the game plan and every position I possibly can so that when I’m making directions as a goalkeeper it’s valid not just because of my position but also in actual knowledge of the game.

Are there any traditions that you do to prepare yourself for practice/games?

CC: Personally to prepare myself I try to get to practice pretty early, I think that's it’s super important as a goalkeeper that has no specific goalkeeping coach that I set my own athletic goals and I know that the majority of them are going to have to be achieved through my own hard work and not necessarily through instruction. So with that being said, having that time before practice just to kinda focus on what I need to grow and improve helps me to focus on my team goals and team during actual practice, so that's pretty much my pre-practice ritual before games and practices. I also have a playlist that's all old eighties hits and so on the way to the field or bus my songs are always on full blast , windows down just to get in the mood for the game. I think I’m not one of those people that has to be in complete silence or intense focus to get pumped and ready, honestly for me it’s just about being centered and focused when your on the field, and I also put a big emphasis on enjoying the process and getting pumped up with your team as a whole and I think that you can be really focused and intense while also singing along on the bus and not being too serious.

Do you think the alterations made for the game this year due to covid has affected the team or their performance?

CC: For one, I wasn’t even sure that I was going to get a senior season and so I feel like even getting the chance to play, doesn’t even matter if we are losing, is something that I didn’t even think we were going to have. Every single game and practice, even if it’s a tough loss, I'm still extremely thankful and it's an opportunity for us to play as a team, and everyone understands the gravity of it and how precious that is. Having lost my spring season last year it’s really crazy and amazing to be back on the field and I definitely think it became a mental thing. Right off the bat we were set back a little bit, because everyone was physically and mentally prepared for tryouts in the summer and then there was that three month period where we didn’t even know if we were going to have a season at all, so it was truly difficult to know if you wanted to put in the energy and time to train and prepare yourself for something you didn’t even know would happen. I think our team personally showed a lot of mental toughness and overcoming that right off the bat. But I do think that because we weren’t sure what our physical season was going to look like it came down to controlling the controllable and one of those is having really good team chemistry which we focused on like crazy because we couldn’t practice our skills as a team. Even a little while back when all we were doing was plain conditioning I think the bond and the trust we developed made us a strong team and a special teammate bond before we were even playing on the field, so even though it wasn’t what our usual season looked like, we still were able to overcome every hurdle and form a special connection between the team.

Bonus Question: Is there any advice you could give to the underclassmen or freshman?

CC: I would like to say to the underclassmen that are coming into South County that if you are having trouble forming connections and finding a sense of normalcy you should come and try out for something, even if you've never played a sport before. I personally had never played field hockey until freshman year and now fours years later I’m a captain on varsity, there's no place to be behind if your willingly to get started and put the work in and I truly think we are blessed to live in a district where sports are so competitive, so even if your thinking about coming out for a sport, try it, work hard, and have fun!

 
 



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