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Merch Madness
FROM PENNSYLVANIA’S MOUNTAIN TOP TO VIRGINIA’S VALLEY
Courtesy:JMUSports.com Release:06/25/2009
Courtesy: JMUSports.com
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By Maggie McConnell ‘09

           Similar to many of her teammates, rising junior Amy Daniel began playing field hockey in elementary school because she wanted to be like her older sibling.  During her fifth and sixth grade summers, Amy participated in field hockey summer camps where she realized her love and skill for the game.  She then went on to play for Crestwood High School in her hometown of Mountain Top, Pennsylvania.  Amy took her playing to another level when she joined both the Majestyx Club Team and the U-21 team. 

          Amy was recruited and offered a spot on James Madison University’s field hockey team after being seen on the field at the National Field Hockey Festival in Palm Springs, California.  Head Coach Antoinette Lucas said, Amy “Was highly regarded as one of best recruits in the country.”  Once Amy came to visit JMU she said, “Once I came here, I loved it” and there was no question where she would attend in the fall of 2007.  Having spent her high school career in a smaller school, Amy felt that her adjustment to JMU was a pretty easy one because of its relatively modest size.  As a freshman, Amy struggled initially with acquainting herself with a new team and learning effective study habits.  Now as a 19-year-old sophomore, Amy said, “I learn quick, and now I’m good.” 

          Looking back on her two seasons so far with the Dukes, Amy said that her most memorable game so far was when, “I scored my first collegiate goal against Saint Louis” during the first game this season.  As a strong defender, Amy believes that she contributes strong skills to her team, while also vowing that she is “always going to work hard no matter what.”  Head Coach Lucas said, “Amy contributes a passion for the game. She is unique because she is a "hockey head".  She loves everything about the game, the equipment, other teams, scores, indoor hockey, outdoor hockey...”  Not only is Amy’s success on the field a result of her skill and love for the game, but also from her level headedness.  Before every game Amy makes sure to not get frustrated, to let things go that bother her and to “walk on the field with a clear mind.”

 Of her teammates with the Dukes, Amy looks up to Tara King and Kelsey Cutchins the most because “they are very strong leaders who always do their best and always have positive things to say.”      Aside from her teammates, Amy also gets great support from her family.  She said, “My mom comes to almost every game and my dad comes when he can.” 

When she is not playing field hockey, Amy enjoys hanging out on the quad with friends, relaxing in her dorm room, and watching movies.  Amy is an interdisciplinary liberal studies major and middle school education minor and hopes to one day teach math and science for grades six through eight.  Academically, she aims to graduate with her masters in middle school education and teach at a school near her hometown in Pennsylvania.  Athletically, Amy strives to do her best everyday, and to assist her team to the NCAA tournament for the fourth straight year.  Given her collegiate career thus far, there is no doubt that Amy will continue to be successful both academically and athletically here at JMU.

 

Note: Maggie McConnell worked as a senior practicum student in the JMU Sports Media Relations Office in the spring.  She graduated in May as an English major with a minor in sports communications.

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