Chelsea Klein ’14 named Field Hockey First Team All-American
Centre’s field hockey team has been in the headlines frequently this season, especially when it made the NCAA Sweet 16 Tournament. Only increasing the pride and achievement of the team’s season is the news that Chelsea Klein ’14 has been named a National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA)/Longstreth DIII First Team All-American.
The long title boils down to this: Klein is the best field hockey player in the entire Division III lineup.
“It is a tremendous honor to be named a First Team All-American,” says Head Field Hockey Coach Jenelle Anthony. “There are over 160 DIII field hockey programs in the country—that’s a lot of players to compete against.”
The All-American designation is given based on career statistics, 2013 season results and the ways in which a player contributes to his/her conference and region. Klein was part of a team that set a school record for wins in a season and advanced farther than any previous field hockey team in the NCAA tournament. She led the Southern Athletic Association (SAA) in goals, assists and points, winning Offensive Player of the Year for her conference. As a result, she is ranked 25th nationally in points and 12th in assists.
“Chelsea is an all-American because of her stand-out presence on the field, her ability to lead through her actions and to get the job done on the forward line,” says Anthony. “Her numbers are astounding, and any NFHCA committee member can appreciate and acknowledge the outstanding performance she had in her final season as a DIII Field Hockey player.”
Klein is extremely humble about the great honor she has received.
“I was never expecting to be recognized, so it was a shock at first,” she says. “I was sitting in class when I found out, and I don’t think I stopped shaking for a few hours. I kept thinking I was dreaming, but every time it was still true.
“I’m so thankful that I’ve been recognized, but I know that I couldn’t have done it without the help of my teammates and coaches,” she adds.
Klein cites competing in the NCAA tournament as the highlight of her final season on the Centre field hockey team.
“I will never forget pacing around the room with my teammates as we waited for the bracket to be released,” she says. “One of the greatest feelings in the world was seeing our name on the bracket and knowing that all of our hard work had paid off.”
While Klein mentions the dedication of her teammates and coaches as an important part of making the season so successful, she also recognizes the important contribution her academic career has made on the field.
“Centre pushes you to work as hard as you can to achieve the best results possible, both in the classroom and in extracurricular activities,” she explains. “I think this mentality carried over into my field hockey career—I’ve always pushed that extra step to run a little faster, hit the ball a little harder and do whatever necessary to improve my skills.
With the help of my teammates, I’ve continued to push myself a little further every practice and every game,” she adds.
The dedication and perseverance of Klein and her teammates certainly paid off this season, a fact coach Anthony will take with her into next season.
“This is a huge accomplishment,” she says, “not only for Chelsea but for the entire Centre Field Hockey program. This moves us to the upper echelon of DIII field hockey programs and only shows the bright future this young program holds.”
Learn more about Centre Field Hockey.
By Mariel Smith