By ELANI COHEN
After consecutive wins against Skidmore College last season, the Cornell women’s polo team is positioned to do well in its upcoming match against the Thoroughbreds next week. The match will be played in Saratoga Springs, New York. Although Skidmore will have a home field advantage against the Red, the women are looking forward to showing the Thoroughbreds their abilities on the field.
Most of last year’s matches, both at Cornell and in Saratoga Springs, ended with Cornell in the lead by at least 20 points. The Red is optimistic that it will have success again during this season’s matches.
“I am looking forward to playing Skidmore on Friday because they are such nice girls both on and off the field and are a pleasure to play with,” said senior Elena Wicker. “I think that our team is going to do very well this season.”
However, despite the optimism and past victories, the polo team saw a lot of seniors graduate last May, which could give the Red a disadvantage in the match. Because of this, the Red took in a lot of new players for this season, including freshmen Mikaela Bloomberg, Frances Bryson, Gillian Cowley and Rebecca Even.
The team has also had many rigorous practices this season to make up for the loss of returning teammates, and has been working on teamwork and other skills that will make the women’s actions on the field more fluid.
“The only thing I would say about the team is that we lost a lot of seniors last year,” said junior Sarah Barnes. “We still have a lot of really strong players, but it’s definitely a building year.”
Though the team will be missing some players, including junior Emma Eldredge, who is abroad in Australia this semester, the team is enthusiastic and hopeful for the upcoming games and season as a whole. The returning players are showing the new players the ropes and helping them better their abilities on and off the field.
“We have many experienced returning players and a number of fantastic new horses being added to our string,” Wicker said. “Everyone is very excited for what this year will bring and I am very much looking forward to our first away game of the season.”
Senior Claire Stieg expressed the team’s overall excitement to get gameplay underway.
“We’re all very excited for our first game of the season against Skidmore,” she said. “[I] hope to have yet another successful season.”