DURHAM, N.C.-- This past weekend Duke women's soccer (DWS) completed our first service project and competed in our first spring scrimmage.
On Friday, roughly half the team helped with the finishing touches on a Habitat for Humanity duplex in downtown Durham. We picked up trash around the site, applied a final layer of paint to porch columns, installed towel racks, screwed in light fixtures, and helped sweep the floors in preparation for the carpet installation. It was a rewarding three hours and a great way to give back on a sunny Friday afternoon. The Habitat staff was very appreciative of our efforts and was doubly impressed with Callie Simpkins and Maddy Haller's knowledge about power tools!
At 1:00 pm on Saturday afternoon, we kicked off our spring season with a match against East Carolina. With only 13 eligible field players, everyone played a lot of minutes and in a variety of positions. Traditionally, Robbie and Billy (our coaches) use the out-of-season play as an opportunity to experiment with different formations and different positions for players. This weekend, the experimentation proved successful! After 105 minutes of competition, we ended the game with a 3-0 win over the Pirates. Congratulations to Mollie Pathman, Gilda Doria and Callie Simpkins for three great goals.
DWS will practice four days this week and then take some well-deserved time off for spring break. So far, the spring has been unbelievably competitive. Every practice has included competition with fitness as punishment for the non-winning teams. Everyone has given 110% in the weight room, with Coach Howser and in training. Transitioning from eight hours of practice a week to 20 hours a week is undoubtedly difficult, but I think this group has made the switch seamlessly. I'm very proud of the team's work ethic thus far and am looking forward to our next game against the Philadelphia Independence in Philadelphia, Pa. on Saturday, March 18th.