The Dinos women's field hockey team is getting better at losing. After three straight losses on home turf Oct. 8-10, the team is 0-6-0 for the season. While this doesn't sound like the beginning of a great story, being a glass-half-full kind of girl, I prefer to put a positive spin on things.
After a crushing 5-0 loss to the top-ranked University of British Columbia Thunderbirds on Friday, the ladies pulled themselves together for a 4-0 loss to the University of Victoria Vikes. They rounded out the tournament with a much more respectable 2-0 loss to the University of Alberta Pandas.
"We improved a lot in the last game of the tournament," said goalkeeper Burgundy Biletski, who attributes some of the turnaround to the re-positioning of veteran forward Venessa Kwan back into the mostly green defensive line. "We have a very young line and we're lacking experience. Vanessa did awesome."
The Dinos had a guest coach working with them last week who brought a fresh perspective and encouraged the team to try new things.
"We switched up our system a bit but just weren't able to finish down in their end," said fourth year player Stefanie Wind. "We let the other team score first and it's hard to come back from that deficit."
The Dinos are currently ranked fourth in the Canada West standings--which sounds better than saying that they are in last place behind UBC, UVic, and U of A respectively. They are minus 21 for points, with three goals for and 24 against.
Up next for the Dinos is the third Canada West Field Hockey tournament in Victoria Oct. 22-24.
"Tactically, we're changing our system again," said Wind. "We need to get some pride back and finish strong."
U of C is only two wins behind the Pandas, who gleefully rub their six point advantage in the Dinos' faces. A well played tournament could push them ahead of their closest competitors.
"We need to beat U of A, just for the principle of it," agreed Wind and Biletski, who admit that while a play-off spot is now unattainable, taking a win from the smug Pandas is a worthy goal.
Kwan neatly summed up the team's objectives for the upcoming tournament. "Scoring lots of goals, keeping goals against low, and beating U of A. We'll be playing the game we know we can."