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2018 Barker Field Hockey Preview

Names may change, but expectations remain the same. Win.

The Barker Lady Raiders field hockey team enters the new season on the heels of yet another successful season that saw them tie rival Akron for first place in the Niagara Orleans League with matching 11-1 records.

It was Akron who would end Barker’s season in the Section VI Class C championship game.

Now, back with a core of talent, the Raiders are looking to go even further this season.

“We’re kind of middle of the road,” head coach Jeff Costello said when defining his team’s overall make up.

“We’re young – we only have two seniors, but a lot of these juniors have been on varsity for a couple of years now. We have a couple of sophomores who have been here for a year or two already. So, young, but with a decent amount of experience.”

Barker will be looking to junior co-captains Ciara Gregoire and Katrina Clare to lead the way. While returning seniors Erin Costello and Paige Sandolfini will also be counted on for their experience.

Gregoire said that it boils down to everyone remembering that there is always room for improvement and to try to take those steps forward each day, while supporting each other along the way.

“We’re kind of just learning as we go and fixing our flaws each game, each practice,” said Ciara Gregoire.

“I think we get along really well so we use that communication on the field.”

Junior Rachel Hurtgam will also be a big piece of the puzzle as will future stars, sophomores Madison Gancasz and Lena Fazzolari. Natalie Bruning also returns.

Coach Costello said the key to continued success is to always expect the best of yourself year after year. Saying things like “we’re young” just opens the door for excuses and lack of commitment.

“We always try to put a lot of expectations on them, regardless of who we have,” Costello said. “I use the expression we never rebuild we just retool. So the expectation is we will continue to perform at a high level regardless of who’s here or who we lost.”

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