Another week, another Rowan field hockey player picking up honors.
Sophomore goalkeeper Abby Hainsworth was named National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Division III Defensive Player of the Week last week. She becomes the second goalie in Rowan field hockey history to pick up the honor, with Morgan Novak getting it in 2018.
After shutting out two nationally-ranked teams, The College of New Jersey 1-0 in overtime and Kean University 1-0, Hainsworth was rewarded for her outstanding play.
“Honestly, I’m really honored,” Hainsworth said. “Getting NJAC [New Jersey Athletic Conference] player of the week was my first recognition I’ve gotten. So the fact I also got National Player of the Week, I was really mind blown. I’m so excited about it.”
Head Coach Michelle Andre is just as happy to see Hainsworth get honored.
“I think it’s awesome,” Coach Andre said. “I think it’s a testament to not just Abby, but just how well… our defense has kind of dialed down. Abby especially had those two games [where] you always want your goalie to make a key save at the right time. She was able to do that in both of those games.”
The recognition is all the more meaningful for Hainsworth, as she didn’t start out as a goalkeeper when she first picked up field hockey in junior high.
“I played field hockey when I was in middle school, but I was center mid,” Hainsworth said. “When I got to high school, I played volleyball for two years and it wasn’t my thing. So I switched back to playing field hockey my junior year of high school… we needed a goalie on our team, so I was like, I wanna try it out… I really ended up loving being a goalie… the fact I got an honor like this while at college, I wasn’t expecting it at all.”
She currently holds a save percentage of 0.692. Hainswoth’s has a goals against average of 0.92 and had three consecutive shutouts at the time of her recognition. Since then, she has picked up two more shutouts with help from fellow sophomore goalie Aida Ingram.
Hainsworth and Ingram have both stepped up into their roles as starters this season together and have become the important last wall of defense on the field.
“If you do make a mistake, you know your… goalies can back you up,” Coach Andre said. “I think that’s huge.”
As for the objectives of the team as a whole, Hainsworth wants to make it far with the rest of her teammates.
“I’m hoping that as a team, we can get number one in NJAC and then hopefully win the NJAC tournament,” Hainsworth said. “And I really hope that we can move forward in the NCAA tournament and reach the Final Four. They reached the Final Four before I came in, and I really want us to get back there again.”
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