The Dinos field hockey season got off to a disappointing, but not wholly unexpected, start Sept. 22-24 as they were defeated in their first three games against Canada West opposition.
Playing at the University of Calgary's Hawking Field, the Dinos lost 6-0 to the University of British Columbia Thunderbirds, 4-0 to the University of Alberta Pandas and 6-0 to the University of Victoria Vikes.
Overall UBC collected the most points with a 3-1 win over the U of A and a 1-1 tie with UVIC.
For the Dinos, their best performance was the first half against the Pandas. Keeping the defending CIS champs off the score sheet until the second period, the Dinos were unlucky not to get at least a consolation goal for all their industry.
The Dinos are the least experienced team in the western division with 12 first-year players on the roster. Despite their youth, the Dinos impressed their coach.
"Considering the experience and age of [our players] we have great potential," said head coach Anne Kromm, adding that the Dinos are looking to build up the new players they have recruited. "It's a total rebuilding year. This is a long-term project."
The Dinos have some tough opponents in their Canada West rivals. Traditionally UBC and UVIC have dominated the western conference and national championship. In 2005 the U of A broke British Columbia's voodoo to take the CIS title.
Winning isn't unknown to the Dinos, as they won seven of their 12 preseason games against CIS eastern conference teams. When the Dinos travel to UVIC this weekend their hopes are fairly modest.
"Our goals will be to keep the goals close and score to close down the goal differential," remarked Kromm.