Varsity field hockey player Hannah Luckes, sophomore, plays with some of the best high school and middle school field hockey athletes in the United States through the Futures program.
Futures is a program sponsored by USA Field Hockey as a gateway for future Olympic and National team hopefuls. Middle school and high school athletes get the opportunity to train with some of the top coaches and compete in tournaments.
“Field hockey kind of takes up your entire life,” Luckes said.
Luckes said hopefuls attend a training session starting in either January or March and are then selected to play if the judges like them. To advance from the second tournament, one must be 16, so Luckes has never gone past it. Luckes has played in the second tournament twice and has been doing Futures for three years.
“When I was a kid, I was really bad at every other sport,” said Luckes, and she found a passion for field hockey when her cousins introduced it to her, and she found she was good at it.
Luckes, who also plays club field hockey, said, “I’ve become really close with the girls on my team. I’ve been playing with them since I was like seven years old, so we’ve been together a long time.”
In order to make it to the first Futures training session, hopefuls must submit videos doing certain field hockey skills.
Varsity field hockey coach subsititute Jason VanBlarmcum said, “What we do as coaches is run a prescribed standard set of skills test and time it, and then we send that it in. If the times are sufficient, they are accepted into Futures.”
Besides Luckes, sophomore Lauren Henry has also been accepted.
However, Luckes said she isn’t considering field hockey as a future professional career. According to Luckes, the United States has an Olympic team and a National team, which are both comprised of only the best field hockey athletes. Luckes did say she is thinking about playing in college.
About her overall field hockey experience, Luckes said, “I’ve gotten really close with the coaches, and the entire atmosphere is really great, so I just keep doing it.”