Since starting her field hockey career seven years ago as a goalie at John Witherspoon Middle School, Kate Rogers ’18 has moved on to becoming Co-Captain of the Princeton High School varsity field hockey team. Over the years, Rogers has embraced her position in net and the responsibility it brings.
“I definitely like the pressure, I guess, in a way. It’s a very controlling position. I get to be there for my team and tell them everything that’s going on in the field around them. I get to have everyone’s back,” said Rogers.
While her love for the sport increased over the years, the people Rogers played the game with made it even more enjoyable.
“A huge part of it was the people. I’ve been playing with Lily Leonard [’18] on defense for seven seasons now, and she’s been with me through it all. I’ve always had really supportive teams and every season the group feels like more like a group of friends than just a team.”
Rogers’ relationship with her teammates has benefited her in continuing to pursue field hockey. However, she has helped her teammates as well, as her leadership has not only applied to her position as goalie. As a captain, Rogers has relished the opportunity to show pride and excitement for the team. She has put in a lot of effort to prepare to before games in order to predict the tendencies of her opponents. Additionally, she routinely gets her teammates energized before games. Psychs, where players come to the game dressed according to a theme, are one way of doing that, and Rogers takes initiative in making sure everyone participates and has a fun time in the process.
“I think all the captains kind of assume different aspects week to week depending on what the other captains need. I think for me, a lot of it is getting really into the psychs and we all get really hyped up. I think all of the captains mesh into one image of being super excited about everything, and always yelling at everyone to hype up,” said Rogers.
Head Coach Heather Serverson has taken note of Rogers’s leadership over the years. Rogers has had four years to develop her leadership skills, but they have been strong from the start. Even as a freshman, she showed signs of the qualities that have turned her into the captain she is now.
“I think she’s always been very consistent, responsible, she’s got good emotional intelligence. She knows when people aren’t feeling so great [and] she builds them up. She’s always been like that. It’s nothing new,” said Serverson.
The way Rogers handles the pressure of being goalie also does not go unnoticed. In addition to her energizing personna, Serverson takes note of Rogers’s calming effect on the team.
“Like I said before, she never shows that she’s flustered. She’s always the consistent, calm voice in the back making sure everybody is on the same page, everyone’s making the same decisions, and she’s also the one that kinda gets players refocused when they get flustered or distracted or whatever it is that they’re experiencing, so in that way she kind of keeps us all together.”