Goalie can be a difficult position to play, but for the right person, it can be the perfect fit.
Victoria Lane has been playing field hockey for the Lions for the last five seasons, beginning on the JV team in her eighth grade season. She was the varsity team’s starting goalie in both her junior and senior years and has proved a force to be reckoned with.
This season, she tallied more than 300 saves for the Lions, including a penalty shutout in the team’s Region 4B opener against Caroline and a season high 48 saves in their final game of the year against Eastern View in the regional quarterfinals.
“When it comes right down to it, like in the Caroline game, it’s all on the goalie,” Lane said. “I love the pressure.”
Being a goalie in field hockey requires nearly as much mental fortitude as it does physical prowess.
“It’s very much a mental game,” Lane said. “If you shut down halfway through, the score can go from 1-0 to 6-0, and then the game’s over by slaughter rule.”
It was that aspect of the position that Lane says she struggled most with for her first couple of seasons. There are still moments, particularly when action gets concentrated in front of the goal, that Lane still feels some pressure.
“It can be stressful,” she said. “You have feet, sticks and bodies all right there in front of you. My strategy is either to hang back and wait for the shot or to push through the crowd and get the ball out.”
Choosing which tactic often depends on the scenario at hand, but one thing Lane says is important is commitment.
“You have to choose one and stick with it,” she said. “If you change course, you get a goal scored on you.”
Field hockey coach Meredith Williamson said Lane has been a standout for the last few seasons.
This is a partial article. Read the full story in The Central Virginian’s Nov. 29, 2018 issue.
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