KATE TZEFRONIS, Special to The Denisonian — Abby Scully ’21 has been playing field hockey since sixth grade. 

Scully, a HESS major from Charlotte, North Carolina, was sure that she wanted to play field hockey in college, but her experience with recruiting became more and more disappointing. She almost gave up, but one of her coaches encouraged her to consider Denison University. After a campus visit in October of her senior year, Scully submitted an early decision application to the college.

“I credit a lot of who I am and what I believe in to field hockey,” says Scully. “Denison gave me the second chance I didn’t know I needed.”

Being a field hockey player has enriched Scully’s life in a lot of ways. She credits the sport with providing her with opportunities for learning “patience, communication, and perseverance.” As a member of Denison’s team, she praises Coach P.J. Soteriades for creating a “safe and fun environment for learning” where she and her teammates can “grow and learn together”. 

When asked how field hockey has shaped her Denison experience, Scully emphasizes the special bond between her and her team. A close-knit group, they “uplift and support each other every single day on and off the field”. To Scully, they’re not just a team; they’re a family. She considers it an honor, as well as a learning experience, to be a team captain. Leading her team has taught her to have more patience and better communication skills, and has allowed her to learn and improve her leadership skills, which “ have opened doors” in other aspects of her life. 

As with all sports this year, field hockey has had to change because of COVID-19. Because of the pandemic, the team is unable to compete against other schools. Despite the sadness Scully feels over not being able “to do what we hoped to” this year, she still sees the bright side of this difficult situation by appreciating “any sense of ‘normal’ ” that Denison has been able to provide. 

While her last year on the field hockey team may not have been what she expected, she remains “grateful to have the opportunity to even be back on campus with the team I love so dearly.”