Field hockey’s Femke Strien kicks off her best season to date
Femke Strien, the junior midfielder on Delaware’s field hockey team, is off to her strongest start yet.
Just three weeks into the season, Strien currently ranks third nationally with 1.25 goals-per-game, took home Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) field hockey Player of the Week honors for the second week in a row and has scored five goals, just one away from her career-high for goals in season.
“The goals that I’ve scored, in the end the build up to the plays, they’ve been great too and there’s a lot of people involved in a play,” Strien said.
Humble as ever and a long way from home, the Netherlands native lends her success to the family she’s found on campus.
“We’re such a big family, the players, but also the coaches, support staff, everyone around it, it just makes it feel like home,” Strien said. “We are such a close team, we have so much fun and we all work hard. I think it’s really showing off in how we play that we connect off the field and on the field.”
And that connection runs deep.
“You come off the field and everyone goes to their parents, but you’re parents aren’t there, but there’s enough parents that will give you a hug or they’ll say good game,” Strien said.
The past three years have included post-game dinners, Thanksgivings spent with teammates and a strong bond that translates to the game.
“It’s a lot more physical,” Strien said about the difference between playing field hockey in the Netherlands versus the United States. “You have to work a little bit harder here. There it was a little bit more tactical. I used to practice three times a week and have a game. Right now, we play for 20 hours a week so that’s a really big difference.”
Those 20 hours have been paying off. The Blue Hens are 5-0 to start the season, their best start since going 8-0 during their 2015 campaign.
Strien’s current 11 points are tied with her freshman year total, setting her up for a phenomenal season. She’s also received the National Field Hockey Coaches Association Division I Weekly Honorable Mention and made Synapse Sports Weekly Honor Roll.
As a student athlete, Strien’s success off the field is just as important.
“Freshman year was hard to figure out with classes and field hockey and especially coming in to doing so much field hockey compared to what I used to do,” Strien said. “It’s sometimes a lot. You really have to schedule everything and make sure you do everything in advance.”
Now an upperclassman, Strien is becoming a leader on her team.
“I feel like I’m able to step up a little bit,” Strien said. “I used to be really quiet and not really share a lot. I’m starting to do that more.”