NCAA: NCAA Field Hockey Season Preview: Division III

M23 - NCAA: NCAA Field Hockey Season Preview: Division III - Photo by: Will C Images, LLC

Photo by: Will C Images, LLC

Middlebury (NESCAC)

The 2022 campaign was a historic one for Middlebury, as they defeated Johns Hopkins to become the first field hockey team in any NCAA division to win five consecutive championships. The dominance that head coach Katharine DeLorenzo and her Panthers have displayed has been unmatched in recent years. 

With the NCAA trophy in hand, the Panthers finished off their 2022 campaign at 21-1, with their lone loss a 2-1 heartbreaker to Trinity. The defeat broke a 42-game win streak, but did not deter Middlebury in their pursuit for dominance over Division III field hockey.

While we anxiously await the release of Middlebury’s 2023 season roster, it is anticipated that the Panthers will see the return of key playmakers senior Katie George and junior Amy Griffin. Both First-Team All-American selections, the pair led the Panthers offense with a combined 35 goals and 20 assists. On the defensive line, Third Team All-American selection Charlotte Marks is expected to return for her senior season at Middlebury.

hopkins23 - NCAA: NCAA Field Hockey Season Preview: Division III - Photo by: Will C Images, LLC

Johns Hopkins (Centennial)

Representing the Centennial Conference well is Johns Hopkins. The Blue Jays made their first-ever appearance in the NCAA Championship game in 2021, where they fell to Middlebury, 4-1, shattering their bid for a perfect season. When Hopkins faced off against Middlebury in the final this past season, the Panthers didn’t have as easy of a time. In the rematch, the Blue Jays held them scoreless in regulation, only falling during added time.

Two big-name departures from the Blue Jays’ lineup are First Team All-American selections Abby Birk and Anna Scott. However, Hopkins will return several key players such as Second Team All-Americans Mikayla Schoff and Siena Urbanski. They will also bring back both senior goalkeeper Alexis Loder and sophomore Phoebe Williams, who also saw some time in the cage last season.

Trinity23 - NCAA: NCAA Field Hockey Season Preview: Division III - Photo by: Will C Images, LLC

Trinity (NESCAC)

Last season, Trinity did the unthinkable – they defeated Middlebury. It was the Panthers’ only loss of the season and snapped the nation’s longest win streak of 42 games. Middlebury had their revenge in the NCAA Quarterfinal match when they knocked the Bantams out of the postseason with a 3-0 victory. Overall, Trinity finished up the 2022 season with a 15-5 record, all losses to other New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) teams. The Bantams only lost to one team that they did not defeat another time in the season (Williams).

An anticipated return to Robin L. Sheppard Field is goalkeeper Olivia McMichael, while the Bantams will lose Second Team All-American Caelin Flaherty.

Jessica Bergen steps in as head coach for the Bantams, replacing Anne Parmenter, who retired after 22 seasons at Trinity. Parmenter, a member of the NHFCA Hall of Fame, won over 200 games in her time with the Bantams. Bergen, meanwhile, joins after 11 seasons as head coach at Westfield State University.


Salisbury23 - NCAA: NCAA Field Hockey Season Preview: Division III - Photo by: Will C Images, LLC

Salisbury (C2C)

Salisbury is another interesting team as they have been a rung above the competition in their small Coast-to-Coast conference, while also impressing with some big non-conference wins last season. The Gulls finished with an 18-1 record that included wins against Messiah, Johns Hopkins, TCNJ, and Rowan. However, when put up against the power of a NESCAC team – Williams – in the NCAA Quarterfinals, the Gulls suffered a 2-0 defeat.

This fall, the Gulls will need to deal with the loss of a few top offensive performers – First Team All-American and 2022 C2C Player of the Year Allie Davis, and Second Team All-American McKenzie Mitchell. Head coach Dawn Chamberlin will look to secure the Gulls foundation with 12 incoming freshmen, and rely on returning talent such as sophomore McKenna Horner.

Williams23 - NCAA: NCAA Field Hockey Season Preview: Division III - Photo by: Will C Images, LLC

 Williams (NESCAC)

Despite a 6-4 conference record last season, Williams joined Middlebury as the only other NESCAC team in the NCAA Semifinals. The Ephs downed then-No. 1 Salisbury in the quarterfinals before coming up against Johns Hopkins and falling 1-0 in their final match of the season.

Williams will take a big hit with the graduation of NESCAC Player of the Year Emily Batchelor, who averaged a goal per game last season. In addition to Batchelor, the Ephs will be missing Catherine Torres, an NCAA All-Tournament Team selection who graduated this past spring. NESCAC Rookie of the Year Kiki Higgins will be returning for her sophomore season.


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