The University of Calgary women's field hockey team broke a long drought on the weekend. For the first time in three years, the field hockeysaurs won a game. On top of the team's win, Dinos skipper Jenn Swagar was named the Canada West Coach of the Year, providing icing on the cake for the weekend. The program has seen a number of improvements this year both on the offensive and defensive side of the ball. In the last two years, the Calgary field hockey team produced only one goal each season. That total was eclipsed this year as the girls potted nine goals in opposing nets throughout the season.
"I think that the girls realized that they are just as skilled as other teams and with it being the last game, all the players gave 100 per cent at the same time," said Swagar referring to her team's effort over the weekend.
Everything seemed to come together for the Dinos on Sun., even seeing them overcome a one goal deficit early in the game, scoring two unanswered points and holding on for the win.
Saturday was a bit of a different story as the University of Victoria Vikes rebounding from two losses the week before to the University of British Columbia came out with a ferocious attack and were very strong on the offensive side of the ball. The Vikes scored five goals and kept the Dinos to only one on their side dropping the Calgary girls to 0-9-2 on the season.
Calgary ends their season 1-9-2 after going 0-25-2 over the last three years. They will now look to build on the late-season success during their indoor season.
"These young ladies have lots more work to do in the indoor season," said Swagar. "They will be training three to four days a week and really focusing on core strength and foot speed. I expect big improvements and more success next outdoor season."
Luckily for this improving squad they expect to have all their players returning next season except for Teryn Buna--the hero of the weekend--and can anticipate drastic improvements in a program that is looking to be on the way up.
As for Swagar, after taking over this year as head coach of a program in very serious trouble, the recognition as coach of the year is affirmation of her hard work and dedication. Humbly downplaying the honour, Swagar instead points to her assistant coaches and her players as the reason for the team's success this year.
"Being coach of the year is truly a reflection of the girls and the other coaches all working hard," she said. "I think that without the other coaches this would not have happened, so I thank Amir Zaidi, Liz Allan, Nat Peterson, Char Christophersen, Dawna Morrow and Jerimiah Barnett."
Still, Swagar knows that this is only the first step to becoming a contending team.
"It feels good to be recognized for something but I know that we have a lot to do, to get better."