Field hockey goalie’s performance earns national attention


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Looking back to find the ball, senior goalie Emma Gromacki helps lead her team to victory in a critical game against Indian Creek on Oct. 13, 2015. Gromacki was named The Baltimore Sun Player of the Week and was included in the USA Today’s ALL-USA Performances of the Week.

On Sept. 9, senior field hockey goalie Emma Gromacki was named the Baltimore Sun Player of the Week for her performance against Garrison Forest School on Aug. 31 and was awarded an American Family Insurance ALL-USA Performance of the Week for her play against Bel Air on Sept  2.

“I was extremely excited. I consider myself fairly under the radar, so it’s kind of nice to be brought to the surface,” Gromacki said.

Gromacki credits her success to coach Alice Puckett, who is not only her high school coach, but also her club coach. Puckett, on the other hand, says Gromacki’s success is a result of her work ethic.

“The key is that Emma was working in the offseason. You can’t just show up on Aug. 15 and have a great season. It takes a lot more time and effort offseason,” Puckett said.

Her teammates have also noticed the work she has put in during the offseason. “Over the summer, she worked religiously,” freshman defender, and Gromacki’s sister, Kate Gromacki said. “She got so much stronger and is so much more motivated.”

Senior goalie Emma Gromacki dives to make a save during warm-ups of the championship game against Maryvale on Nov. 1, 2015. The field hockey team went on to win the championship game 1-0.

Gromacki suffered a quad injury during a workout over the summer at the Arena Club, but that didn’t stop her from coming to practice. She had to roll out her quad for 45 minutes before she could start practicing.

“It’s my senior year in high school, and I didn’t want to let my team down by being injured,” Emma Gromacki said.

Another part of Gromacki’s success comes from her relationship with her back line. According to her teammates, she and her defenders are always on the same page. “She’s always talking and communicating with us,” junior defender Maddie Fraiji said. “She’s everywhere, but always aware [of what’s going on].”

Gromacki is not only the goalie, but is also one of the captains. “She’s very good at saying, ‘Guys, we need to step this up,’ after a goal is scored. She’s very good at staying positive and very uplifting,” Kate Gromacki said.

“I am definitely more confident in my play, in my general fitness level, and in my understanding of the game,” Emma Gromacki said.

Moving forward, Gromacki is going to take these awards in stride and use them to help motivate her to continue working hard. In fact, Gromacki doesn’t believe that the game against Garrison Forest was her best performance.

“This is definitely going to push me to be better, I believe. I know it could be very easy for someone to just be like, ‘Oh, I’ve been the Player of the Week, so now I can just slack off’ [but] I don’t think that is true,” Gromacki said.

“I think the team is happy for her. They’re excited about it, and they’re certainly glad that she is on our team,” Puckett said.

Gromacki will continue her field hockey career for the next four years at Lehigh University, a Division I program.

Daniel Robinson is a Sports Editor for The Patriot and