Bermuda women fit for hockey qualifiers
HAMILTON, Bermuda (CMC):
The Bermuda women's field hockey team flew into Jamaica late yesterday in good shape for the week-long Central American and Caribbean Games (CAC) qualifiers.
The two finalists from the round-robin tournament, to be staged at the National Hockey Field from November 5-12, will earn a place in next year's CAC Games in the Colombian city of Barranquilla.
Bermuda face Puerto Rico on Sunday, followed by games against Guatemala, Panama, Guyana and Jamaica.
The Bermuda team have been working on their fitness and have the right mentality for glory,, according to captain LaKae Tavares.
"One of the strengths that we're going to have in this tournament is fitness. This is probably the fittest side that I've ever trained with. Then it just comes down to mental toughness."
Two of the Bermuda players have suffered scary moments.
Tavares herself was the victim of having a ball hit her in the shoulder last week, while vice-captain Jasmine Patterson took a shot to the face while playing in a club game at the weekend.
But both are ready to go, with Tavares anchoring a strong defence and Patterson the main target up front.
"We don't want to have too much expectation when we go there. But we're just excited about the chance to be able to win," Tavares said.
"The way I look at it is that none of these teams are going to be much better than us.
"It's who's going to show up on that day and just follow through and take advantage of the chances and, hopefully, that's going to be us."