The 2014 World Cup
The magnitude of this tournament is hard for me to fathom. In middle and high school your team is working to become the best team in the State. In College, the prize is to become the Nation’s best. But the team who wins the World Cup is… #1 in the World? Unfathomable.
The USA field hockey team is currently undefeated and ranks at the top of pool play in the tournament. Now, for those who are completely uninvolved with our team’s history and development let me expand on the enormity of this feat. Placing last in the 2012 Olympics and taking on a new head coach while transitioning to a different facility on the east coast, we were left like a tumbleweed on the edge of a cliff. We just had to wait and see if the next gust of wind would blow us off into the abyss or onto safer ground. We were vulnerable, but our engrained “never say die” American mentality helped us hold on until we were nudged a little further inland. Our skills improved, fitness was given a whole new meaning by “Dangerous Dave” (name given to our strength and conditioning coach by the International Hockey federation), and the belief that we can be successful was put back in its rightful place.
Coming into the tournament ranked 10th and going into the Semi-final match tomorrow vs. Australia has sent a ripple through the field hockey world. The last time USA medaled in the World Cup was in 1994 when the team took 3rd place in Dublin, Ireland. Bottom line, the facts are this and the ranks are that, but the only thing that really matters is dominating the moment that is in front of us and we plan to.