NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Five incoming first years will join the Yale field hockey roster for the 2018 season, which starts Sept. 3. The group comes from five different high schools and three different U.S. states/Canadian provinces. It includes two forward/midfielders, two midfielders and one back/midfielder.
The members of the Class of 2022 bring excellent field hockey credentials to New Haven, including one (Katie Pieterse (Ridgefield, Conn.)) who led her team in goals and assists for each of the last two years. They have been involved with national programs; one (Alissa Wong (West Vancouver, B.C.)) has been on the Canadian National Junior Development Squad since 2016. Their athleticism is reflected in the fact that many of them played multiple sports in high school, including one (Laine Garber (Downingtown, Pa.)) who played four years of field hockey and lacrosse.
In addition to their individual accomplishments, the first years come from highly successful programs. One (Kelly Dolan (Hamden, Conn.)) was part of the first field hockey team in Kent School history to win the Founders League Championship in 2017; the team then won it again in 2018. Her team only had one regular season loss in her last two seasons.
The first years all have leadership experience, as all were team captains for at least one season. That leadership has translated to their off-the-field pursuits; one (Théodora Dillman (Lancaster, Pa.)) founded Readers Helping Readers in 2016 as a club to connect high school readers to readers in kindergarten or first grade.
The five newcomers will add to a core group of returnees from last year for Pam Stuper, who enters her 14th season as Yale's Caroline Ruth Thompson '02 Head Coach of Field Hockey. Eight Bulldogs who started 12 or more games -- and five who started all 17 games -- in 2017 return for 2018. Jess Barnett returns for her third season as an assistant coach, while Kristen O'Rourke joins the staff as an assistant this year. Mary Beth Barham '11 returns her fourth season, now as a volunteer assistant as she continues playing for the U.S. National Team.
Here is a look at the newest Bulldogs:
Conestoga Valley High School
X-Calibur Field Hockey Club
USA Field Hockey: Attended Junior National Camp 2017 … Selected to Stars and Stripes National Futures Championship all-tournament team 2017 … Selected to U19 National Futures Championship Tournament 2017 (member of Gold Medal team) … Selected to U16 National Futures Championship Tournament 2015, 2016 … Winner of Barbara Longstreth Sportsmanship Award – Team Cortina 2015 … Selected to U14 National Futures Championship Tournament 2014 … Level I Futures training 2015 (U16), 2016 (U16), 2017(U19), anticipated 2018 (U19).
Conestoga Valley High School: Team captain as a junior and senior … MAX Field Hockey No. 22 in 2017 Top 50 Class of 2018 … NFHCA Academic All-American Scholar of Distinction 2016, 2017 … PHSFHCA second team regional All-American 2017 … PHSFHCA first team All-State 2015, 2016, 2017 … Lancaster-Lebanon League Linda Shelley Spirit Award winner 2017 … All-league midfielder 2015, 2016, 2017 … First team Section 1 all-Star midfielder 2015, 2016, 2017 … Second team Section 1 all-star midfielder 2014 … Four-year varsity letter winner … Started all but six games in high school career … Student Council Member 2014-2018 … National Honor Society member 2016-2018 … National Art Honor Society Member 2016-2018 (Public Relations Officer 2016-2017; President 2017-2018) … Fellowship of Christian Athletes member 2014-present (Leader 2016-2018) … Fellowship of Christian Students member 2014-present (Leader 2017-2018) … Food Service Committee Member 2016-2018 … Rotary Club Student of the Month January 2016 … Homecoming Queen 2017 … Arashay Borden Memorial Scholarship for excellence in the area of English 2018 … Upper Leacock Alumni Association Heart of the Class of 2018 Award recipient … Fellowship of Christian Athletes Athlete of the Year award recipient 2018 … Conestoga Valley High School Outstanding Female Senior Athlete Award recipient 2017-2018.
X-Calibur Field Hockey Club (Lanco Premier Club through 2016): U19 National Indoor Tournament 2016, 2017, 2018 … U19 National Indoor Tournament 2015 … U19 participant as a U16 eligible player 2014-2015 indoor season … U19 Shooting Star Tournament 2015, 2016 … U19 Disney Showcase 2014, 2015 … U16 National Field Hockey Festival 2014 (U14 eligible), 2015 … U16 National Indoor Tournament 2014 (U14 eligible) … U16 Disney Showcase 2013 (bronze medal), 2012 (U14 eligible).
Notes: AAU Junior Olympics Participant Field Hockey 2015, 2016 … Founded Readers Helping Readers in 2016 as a club to connect high school readers to elementary readers … Selected as featured local artist by the Hamilton Club, Lancaster, Pa., April, 2017 … Westminster Presbyterian Church Youth Group 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 … English as a Second Language Volunteer Classroom Assistant at Westminster Presbyterian Church 2016-2017, 2017-2018 … Mother, Anne L. L. Dillman, is a 1993 Yale graduate and played field hockey … Uncle Theodore H. Lehman is also an Ivy Leaguer (Penn Class of 2000).
Why Yale? "Even before I could walk, I have come to Yale alum events with my parents. So when I began my college search, Yale felt so much like home to me. I chose Yale for its excellence in academics and athletics. Of course, I love Yale's residential-college system, the opportunities at Yale, and the institution's depth of history."
Kent School: Team captain … Team MVP sophomore, junior and senior seasons … All New England team sophomore, junior seasons … Selected to NEPSAC all-star game sophomore, junior and senior years … First field hockey team in Kent School history to win Founders League Championship in 2016; won it again in 2017 … Team only had one regular season loss in her final two seasons … Four years of varsity field hockey … Also was on Kent varsity girls' ice hockey team for four years … Captain and four-year member of Kent School Boat Club … Selected onto Senior Council as Dining Hall Stewardess … Participated in Hope for Haiti Club … Tour guide.
Notes: Played at Hamden High School before Kent, earning Rookie of the Year as a freshman … Father ran cross country at West Point.
Why Yale? "Growing up in the surrounding community, attending Yale had always been a dream of mine. My parents took me to the Yale football games and we attended concerts at Woolsey Hall. When the opportunity to attend Yale presented itself and I visited campus as a potential student I knew it was right for me."
Downingtown West High School
WC Eagles Hockey
Downingtown West High School: Team captain as a senior … Second team all-area 2017 … First team All-Chesmont 2017 … Second team All-Chesmont 2016 … Four years varsity field hockey … Team was undefeated in regular season and finished 25-1 in 2017 … 2017 PIAA District 1 AAA Champions … 2017 PIAA AAA State Runner-Up … Team was 2016 PIAA AAA State Quarterfinalist … Also played four years of varsity lacrosse … Second team All-Chesmont in lacrosse 2017 ... Academic all-state in lacrosse … Student Council President.
WC Eagles Hockey: 2017 NIT Pool Winner.
Notes: Volunteered for 7Elements and Habitat 4 Humanity … Hobbies include reading, skiing and hiking … Father played lacrosse at UMass … Sister Jenna plays field hockey at UMass (Class of '21).
Why Yale? "I found that Yale was a perfect balance between competitive academics and athletics, while also maintaining a large sense of community among the team and the University. I also trust the coaches and their commitment to building a program that can contend to be amongst the top of the Ivy League every year."
Ridgefield High School
AG Hockey Club
USA Field Hockey: Participated in USA Field Hockey Futures program and attended multiple national USA field hockey showcases, including National Field Hockey Festival, Disney Showcase and Shooting Star Showcase.
Ridgefield High School: Four-year varsity starter in field hockey … Team captain 2017-18 … Led team in goals and assists junior and senior years … Team Leadership Council 2017 … Second team all-state 2016 and 2017 … Team most valuable player 2017 … Team Outstanding Offensive Player 2016 … First team All-FCIAC 2016 and 2017 … Hearst CT Media Field Hockey All-Star Team 2016 … Connecticut Junior Select Team 2016 … Finished career with 34 goals and 27 assists (18 goals senior season) … Team qualified for FCIAC post season tournament three times and state tournament four times … Selected as school representative for Connecticut Interscholastic Conference Class Act Schools Sportsmanship Program 2017, 2016; collaborated with other Connecticut high school athletes to improve sportsmanship in schools … On track and field team as a sophomore and on lacrosse team as a freshman … National Honor Society 2017-present.
AG Hockey Club: Qualified for National Indoor Tournament all four years … Finished second at NIT in 2018 (pool D).
Notes: Volunteer with National Charity League since 2012, and has served as vice president -- volunteer at local philanthropies including Meals on Wheels, New Pond Farm, Prospect Ridge Housing, Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra and Ridgefield Social Services … Volunteer coach for Ridgefield Youth Field Hockey (since 2014) and AGH Field Hockey (since 2016) … Tutor with Role Model Mentors since 2016 -- guides local youth in elementary and middle school … Family and Children's Agency summer intern 2017 -- planned activities and crafts; supervised field trips for middle school students … Certified field hockey referee 2015-present … Hobbies include writing (journaling), art, photography and coaching field hockey.
Why Yale? "To me, Yale offers the perfect combination of rigorous academics and competitive athletics. When it came time to decide on the future of my field hockey career, there was no doubt in my mind as to which school I wanted to play for—Yale. I have been coming to Yale for as long as I can remember. When I was very young, I participated in a program for adopted children sponsored by the Korean American Students at Yale (KASY). I loved my Yale 'big sibs' who taught me about my Korean heritage. Years later, I began attending field hockey clinics at Yale and loved working with Coach Stuper and her staff, and playing on Johnson Field. I am so lucky to have the chance to study, forge new friendships, and play field hockey at Yale."
West Vancouver, B.C.
Sentinel Secondary School
West Vancouver Field Hockey Club
Field Hockey Canada: Canadian National Junior Development Squad since 2016.
Field Hockey British Columbia: 2017 U18 Female Player of the year … Canadian National Championships Tournament 2017 U18 BC Provincial Team (Silver), 2016 U18 BC Provincial Team (Gold) and 2015 U16 BC Provincial Team (Silver).
Sentinel Secondary School: Team captain in junior and senior years … Named 2017-2018 North Shore Senior Girls "AAA" Field Hockey First All-Star … Five years on varsity field hockey team … Four years on varsity soccer team … Academic honour roll all five years of high school.
West Vancouver Field Hockey Club: 2017 West Vancouver Premier Junior Player of the Year … 2017 West Vancouver Most Promising Junior Player of the Year.
Rob Short Coaching Academy: Participated 2013-2018 … 2016 U16 California Cup (Gold) … 2015 U16 California Cup (Silver) … 2014 U19 US National Festival (Gold).
Notes: Played at Metro level with West Vancouver Soccer Club through grade 11, co-captained; 2015 and 2016 Metro League Champions; 2015 BC Provincial Champions … With Whistler Mountain Ski Club (Alpine Ski Racing): 2012, 2014 BC Winter Games; 2013, 2014 BC Provincial Championships; 2014 Western Canada Championships; 2012-2014 Whistler Cup … Played piano with Royal Conservatory of Music since 2006 … 2014 Grade 10 Piano with honours … West Vancouver Community Centre Volunteer … Canadian Ski Instructor Alliance Certified Level 1 Instructor … High school teammate Alex MacKay is in the Yale field hockey class of 2020 … Older sister Sabrina plays varsity field hockey at the University of Calgary (2015 Canadian Rookie of the Year and 2016/2017 Canada All-Star Team).
Why Yale? "The first time I visited Yale, I looked at my dad and said 'This is it'. I instantly felt at home and a sense of belonging. I knew that with Yale's remarkable academics and competitive athletics that it was the right place for me."