The possibility of an undefeated 2022 season was far-off in the distance at the start of Susquehannock’s field hockey season.
“I knew we were going to do well and go far,” said senior co-captain Maggie Grim, “but I never thought we’d be undefeated.”
Susky proved it could be done in a year of firsts that are still going.
With their victories over YAIAA opponents at the York-Adams tournament this past weekend, the Warriors improved their record to 19-0. It’s the first time in Susquehannock’s program that the team went undefeated.
Susky took down Littlestown in a tightly contested opening round winning it 3-2. Then York Suburban fell to them 1-0 in the semifinals, and finally Central York 1-0 in the championship round. It’s also the first YAIAA championship in program history.
“I thought we would have a really successful season,” senior co-captain Natalie Badour said. “Not necessarily undefeated though.”
The team’s winning ways are infectious. It took them five years to reclaim the YAIAA Division II championships since 2017, but they did it.
“It just sets everyone up for success and makes people just want to keep doing the same,” Grim said.
In 2021, Susquehannock was 16-6-1 overall. They made it to the District 3 Class 2A tournament but lost to Mechanicsburg in the quarterfinals. In the opening round of states, the Warriors fell to Gwynedd Mercy.
“Last year we went to states for the first time,” Grim added. “This year we want to go even farther, so I hope next year they just want to keep going farther and farther.”
But the road from last season to where they are now wasn’t easy.
“There were times where I thought we would (be undefeated), yes,” said head coach Sharon McLaughlin. “And there were times where I thought we wouldn’t. They put it together when they needed to.”
Against York Suburban in the semifinal round, it took Susquehannock 56 minutes to score. It was Grim who put the goal on the board for the Warriors. Against Central, it was another senior, Lola Sroka, with the tally a little more than halfway through the second quarter.
McLaughlin’s approach to this season has been “working as a team.”
“I think to keep moving up, we’re going to have to put that teamwork together again and learn to play a game that we’re all involved in,” McLaughlin said.
As the third seed in Class 2A, Susquehannock will host the New Oxford Colonials on Wednesday, Oct.26 at 4 p.m. It’s the first round of the 2A tournament.
“I’m hoping that we peak at the right time,” said McLaughlin. “And it has to be soon. But (we’re) doing well.”
And as far as memories go, this season is also one for the books.
“Every game is fun, it’s fun to win,” Grim said. “I mean, we’re all really close. We have a great team bond, so just being with each other every day is a lot of fun.”
Creating moments, especially on bus rides to games, is entertaining, Badour said.
“We can sometimes be very low energy, but also everybody on this team has such a big personality,” she said. “That when they’re all put together at its peak, we have so much energy and so much fun together.”
Next year’s team has a lot to learn from its six seniors before they graduate.
“Good luck,” McLaughlin said laughing. “There’s some big shoes to fill. Six of them.”
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*FAN is headquartered in District 3. We are also following district games statewide. Check back for October and November postseason coverage.