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IFHCK Nets Gold at 2012 National Festival Tournament
November 26, 2012By Byron White of VYPE MAGAZINE - Greater Louisville
The U19 IFHCK Warriors returned Sunday from West Palm Beach, Florida undefeated with the Gold medal. The Warriors relied heavily on defense in their quest for the Gold – giving up only one goal in 300 minutes of play – proving once again that while “offense wins games, defense wins championships.”
The 2012 National Field Hockey Festival Tournament was host to126 U19 and 70 U16 teams with pools of “equal competitiveness” created using the most recent versions of the USA Field Hockey Club rankings. Going into the long holiday weekend IFHCK U19’s were 12th in the nation and should move up as several of the top 10 teams failed to live up to their rankings.
IFHCK Warrior team members represent a diverse group of players from 7 local high schools (Mercy, Male, KCD, Collegiate, Manual, Assumption, and Ballard). Under the direction of Abbey Heird, a former USA Field Hockey National Team Member, the Warriors demonstrated poise and confidence under pressure as they faced top national teams from Maryland, California, Pennsylvania, New York, Virginia, and New Jersey.
The Gold Medal was not the only highlight for the IFHCK players. Their Thanksgiving dinner provided a surprise and great honor, with a keynote address from Keli Puzo – a USA Olympic Field Hockey Team Member for the Beijing and London Olympics. Keli’s call for perseverance and love of the game was truly inspiring.