Leesburg, Va. — While heading into seventh grade, Emily Tyler decided to give rec field hockey a try. A year later, Tyler made a travel team the same year that the VHSL announced they’d be recognizing field hockey as a Tier 2 sport. Then a year after that, Tyler scored the first hat trick in Loudoun County High School history. And now just five years after she picked up a field hockey stick for the first time, Tyler has made a commitment to continue her field hockey career at Bridgewater College starting in the 2021-2022 school year.
“Athletes dedicate so much of their time to improving their game to achieve the goal of committing to play their support in college,” the 5-foot-7 Tyler said. “It’s an excitement like no other to hear the offer and to know that the practices in the rain, the tournaments on Thanksgiving weekend, and the countless car trips to tournaments have paid off. I feel lucky to have been offered this opportunity and to see my dreams come true.”
Tyler’s short field hockey career has already proved fruitful. As mentioned, Tyler scored Loudoun County High School’s first ever hat trick during her freshman year then led her team in goals during both her sophomore and junior campaigns, earning second team all-Region 4C honors in 2018 and 2019 and first team all-Dulles District honors in 2018 and 2019.
“I’m thankful to have the opportunity to play field hockey at LCHS, and I’ve enjoyed every moment I took the field proudly wearing my LCHS uniform,” Tyler said. “I truly believe field hockey is a team sport: we win together and lose together. My success on the field is attributed to this team, and I’m grateful to be a part of this family!”
In 2019, Tyler got her Loudoun County family off to a great start, finishing their season at 9-9, including a 3-3 mark in a tough Dulles District. Her senior season, however, has been put on hold because of the VHSL’s shifting schedule due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Tyler is itching to get back on the field with her teammates.
“I love field hockey because of the aspect of a team working together,” Tyler said. “The girls that I have played with at both the travel level and the high school have become my sports family, and we work together as a team to accomplish a goal.”
When she gets down to Bridgewater, Tyler will try to quickly assimilate with her new Eagles teammates, including Potomac Falls graduate Emily Jencks. Led by 17th-year head coach Allyson Kenyon, the Division III Eagles finished 5-14, including a 3-5 finish in the Old Dominion Athletic Conference in 2019. Just four seasons before that, Bridgewater had claimed the ODAC championship and advanced to the NCAA DIII Sweet 16.
“Field hockey, like a lot of sports, relies on the success of the team, and I think I’ll bring my dedication, hard work and strive for success to the Eagles’ team,” said Tyler, who will play forward for Bridgewater. “I’m focused on working hard and improving my skill set each time I take the field. In addition to this, I’ll bring my positive attitude, excitement, and energy to the team. I look forward to getting to know my new teammates and creating lifelong friendships.”
With just one modified high school season standing between her and Bridgewater, Tyler is excited with anticipation as she readies for her field hockey dreams to come true.
“As I stood on the field at the Jopson Athletic Complex, and I heard the Bridgewater field hockey coach say that she would be excited for me to join their roster, I could feel the excitement bubbling up,” Tyler said. “You work so hard day in and day out lifting, doing cardio, focusing on my field hockey skills, and attending practices and games and you hope that all this hard work has paid off in the long run to see your athletic and academic dreams come true.”