Field hockey player kneeling on the field holding a stick.

Hometown: Phoenix, Maryland    Position: Midfield
Stick: Grays AC10 Probow
College: William & Mary
Instagram: @pyperfriedman

PERSONAL HIGHLIGHTS

What stick do you use and why do you choose it?
I use the Grays AC10 Probow (36.5). To be honest, I had never used a Grays before until this stick. I previously used Adidas sticks, and I liked that the Grays stick had a similar “funky toe”. My coach, Tess Ellis, watched me using it at practice and practically forced me to keep it because my shots were so much harder. I have loved using it ever since and believe it has helped me elevate my game!

Do you have a grip preference? If so, which grip and why do you like it?
I prefer to use thin grips, so I usually keep the grip that comes with the stick!

How long have you been playing field hockey and what made you first want to start playing?
I have been playing field hockey since I was about 6 years old. My mom and aunt both played at William & Mary, and my older sister began playing a couple years before me: field hockey is in the family.

Do you have any pre-game rituals?
I am a big fan of journaling and visualization, so pre-game I typically review some measurable challenges that I set for myself in the game such as “take this many shots” or “prevent player X from doing this”. It makes every game feel new and exciting. I also like to dance with my teammates and just try to relax; I always play my best when I am having fun.

What’s your go-to pre-game meal?
My go to pre-game meal varies. I like to eat a big meal at least 3 hours before playing, and I have a pre-game snack about an hour before warmups. The pre-game snacks are pretty routine: pretzels and peanut butter + fruit snacks or a candy to get a bit of a sugar rush.

What is your go-to game day hairstyle?
For game day I either have one of my teammates French braid my hair into a ponytail, or I just do a simple “pony bun” where you leave your hair tucked into your hair tie a bit.

Favorite pump-up song(s) to listen to before a game?
Downtown by Macklemore, Wild Wild West by Will Smith, and Welcome to the Jungle (Guns N’ Roses lol).

Describe your playing style in three words?
Quick, scrappy, smart

What do you like to do when you’re not playing field hockey?
Some of my hobbies include running, yoga, journaling and reading, hanging out with my friends and family, and I’m trying to learn how to be a better cook and also how to play chess.

What’s your favorite motivational quote?
“Don’t put yourself under a glass ceiling”. I was told this by a field hockey coach a couple of years ago and it has stuck with me ever since. I find myself setting goals that end up limiting my full potential. It is important to see the big picture and constantly strive to achieve more.

If you could give your younger self a piece of advice what would it be?
Don’t compare yourself to others. Everyone is on a different path and learning curve. Some players develop more quickly than others: that doesn’t reflect how rich their careers are!

What is your favorite field hockey memory?
My favorite field hockey memory would have to be from this past year: winning our conference championship (CAA). We were down the entire game, but in the last quarter we tied it and took Monmouth to overtime. At the beginning of overtime, stepping onto the field, I could tell we were going to win simply by the difference in body language between the two teams. It was a hard-fought game and we ended up winning off of a corner. The feeling of accomplishing something that people never thought you could pull off, on top of doing it with the people you love, is unmatched.

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