DURHAM, N.C. – With kickoff to preseason just weeks away, the Duke field hockey program shines the spotlight on freshman midfielder Noor van de Laar, who joins the Blue Devils from Antwerp, Belgium.
van de Laar competed at the highest level with Belgium’s U-14, U-15, U-16 and U-18 national teams. Her time with the U-18 squad included a trip to the International Hockey Federation’s 6 Nations Tournament, as well as a friendly against the United States.
“Noor’s no-nonsense approach to success is impressive,” said head coach Pam Bustin. “She works to win and loves the challenges along the way. Both her hockey and academic experiences within the Belgium system have prepared her well for the next four years at Duke.”
In Belgium, van de Laar also played for several club teams, including the KHC Dragons, Antwerp and Push.
“Noor has competed at a top level as well as completed a rigorous academic curriculum,” Bustin said. “There is no doubt that she will enjoy the collegiate system, excel on the pitch and will quickly adapt to life as a Duke student-athlete.”
van de Laar joins five other incoming Blue Devils in the 2018 freshman class.
Why did you choose Duke?
Noor van de Laar: Duke has a great combination of academics and sports which I really appreciate!
What is your favorite field hockey memory?
NVDL: Playing in the 6 Nations Tournament in Barcelona with the Belgium U-18 team and friendly preparation game against the USA.
When did you start playing field hockey?
NVDL: I started when I was five years old playing in Belgium at my club called Dragons. We played on a small pitch, four against four, and we were named the Little Squirrels.
Who has had the biggest impact on your life?
NVDL: My parents and especially my dad when it comes to field hockey. He gives a lot of great advice and good working points after a game. This really helps me get better and know what to do the next game.
To be a part of the Duke field hockey program is … something I’m very proud of! And definitely the best thing that has happened to me in my hockey career!