B-CC Field Hockey To Open Season With Three Games In Two Days

by Eric Meany

After wrapping up the pre-season with a 3-0 victory over Bullis last Thursday, the Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School field hockey team had to do one more thing before it could begin its 2012 campaign:


By the time the Barons play their first game of the regular season, it will have been eight days since the squad’s final scrimmage. There will be no break for the Barons after hosting Broadneck on Friday night, though, as they will be right back in action with games against Severna Park and St. Stephen’s & St. Agnes on Saturday as part of the Sally Nyborg Tournament at Roland Park Country School in Baltimore.

“We’re the last county team that plays a game,” first-year coach Ralph Goodwin said. “And it’s a long week, especially with the holiday weekend involved. Our girls are going to be chomping at the bit to play by Friday, and it’s just a matter of how do I harness that energy and have them not waste it all on Friday night when we still have two on Saturday to go.”

Goodwin was hired over the summer to replace long-time coach Amy Wood, who stepped down after having won 10 state championships in her 19 years at B-CC. Goodwin worked with Wood last year in an administrative capacity and is familiar with many of the Barons players from his coaching duties with the Champions of Tomorrow Jackals club team, resulting in a relatively smooth transition so far.

The Barons lost the Class 4A State Championship game to Severna Park in 2011, and many of last year’s starters are returning this season. Although midfielder Grace Reingruber is now playing for Bates College in Maine, Goodwin said that returning players accounted for 37 of the 48 goals B-CC scored last year.

Among the Barons’ seniors, Goodwin singled out Division I recruits Madisson Tully and Kaela Goodwin as players that other teams will have to alter their game plans for. He also named Helen Webster, Lucy Leahy and junior defender Chloe Druskin as keys to Barons’ chances this year.

B-CC will be without Druskin for the first few weeks of the season as she recovers from torn thumb ligaments suffered in a scrimmage against Pocomoke. Goodwin said it’s just one of many injuries the Barons had to deal with in the pre-season.

“We have about six girls right now that could be significant contributors for us who are injured in one way or another,” Goodwin said. “So it’s really been hard to get the same 11 on the field and get some consistency and continuity with our lineup.”

Two of Goodwin’s daughters, senior defender Kaela Goodwin and junior goalkeeper Kiley Goodwin, are returning starters for the Barons. Their presence on the team caused him to hesitate somewhat when he first considered applying for the coaching job.

“I kind of did it unbeknownst to them just because I didn’t want to add any extra anxiety to the upcoming season,” Goodwin said. “Especially with coach Wood leaving and the girls kind of being uncertain who the next coach would be.”

Goodwin played lacrosse at South Carroll High School and Pfeiffer University before spending time as an assistant at Long Reach High School in Howard County. He began the transition to coaching field hockey when he realized it was the sport his three daughters were most likely to play.

“I just went nose-first into field hockey and got as involved as I could,” Goodwin said. “And that led me to going to coaching clinics and a lot of education and working with [Academy of the Holy Cross coach] Jenna Ries with the Jackals, who’s really been my coaching mentor as far as field hockey goes.”

When word came late in the summer that Goodwin had gotten the job at B-CC, his daughters were traveling and unaware that he had even applied for the position.

“It took a couple of days for the word to get out to them,” Goodwin said. “It was an interesting turn of events for us.”

Now he is set to lead his daughters and their teammates as they attempt to return to the state finals. But first, he must find a way to guide them through playing their first three games in less than 24 hours.

“You know what, it’ll just make us stronger at the end of the season,” Goodwin said.

“But it’s not anything I’m looking forward to by any stretch of the imagination.”


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