Field hockey captain finds success on and off the field

By Matthew Bernat | Oct 11, 2017
Courtesy of: Marissa Smith Senior captain Laura Biscoe assists young players at a World Camp USA field hockey clinic held this summer at UMass Dartmouth.

Saying that field hockey changed Laura Biscoe’s life is not an overstatement.

Now a captain on the Wareham High School girls varsity team, Biscoe, a senior, spent the first half of high school uninvolved in activities, just going to classes and then home.

That was until Marissa Smith, the team’s head coach and a physical education teacher, reached out to her on a hunch.

“She’s the biggest success story I have ever seen in 20 years of coaching,” said Smith. “She wasn’t remotely athletic, but I said, ‘you’ve got to come try out for the team.’”

From there, she started practicing, improving little by little each week, working to learn the game.

“Nobody worked harder. I’ve never seen a player develop so fast,” said Smith. She noted that Biscoe is talented enough to be a starter on any South Coast Conference team.

With the confidence she gained on the field, Biscoe she began becoming involved in extracurriculuars. She’s now a member of Wareham High School’s student council, DECA Club and has enrolled in three advanced placement classes.

“Before field hockey, I couldn’t even speak in front of other people,” said Biscoe.

Smith said Biscoe’s circle of friends got bigger, too, and it includes the team’s other captain, Sienna Fernandes.

On the field, both are driving the team, which unfortunately hasn’t been competitive the past few years, said Smith.

This year, the team is 0-7 at the season’s midway point. Smith, who became coach two years ago, said she knew there was going to be a period of working to recruit younger players.

When Smith became coach there were 13 girls on the team. This year, that number has grown to 24.

“We have to get a grassroots program to get girls excited about playing field hockey,” said Smith. “Wareham had a strong field hockey tradition in the past and it could have one again.”

To that end, she launched a youth clinic this year that attracted 40 girls. For the players already on the team, she’s focused on making them better by having them attend field hockey camps.

Measuring success at this stage isn’t done with wins, she said. It’s done by watching the players improve game by game and developing their skills.

Smith said it will take time to build a competitive team, but with players like Fernandes and Biscoe leading the way, she hopes it won’t be too long.

“In the end, only what you put in is what you get out,” said Biscoe.

 

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