September 18, 2008
By David Driver
For the Stafford County Sun
Used with permission
Sarah Warlick attended a team field hockey camp at James Madison University during the summer of 2007. She played so well that JMU coaches asked her to return later that summer.
“I ended up loving it,” Warlick said of the school in the Shenandoah Valley.
And the Dukes followed her progress during her senior season at Colonial Forge High School last fall.
Now Warlick is a freshman reserve for JMU, a school in Harrisonburg that is consistently ranked among the top 20 teams in the nation.
“It is completely different,” Warlick, a two-time captain at Colonial Forge, said of Division I field hockey.
JMU began the season with a 6-1 win against Saint Louis and a 1-0 victory over Ohio before falling 3-1 to Wake Forest of the Atlantic Coast Conference.
The Dukes then beat Virginia of the ACC 1-0 at home in double overtime Sept. 10. JMU entered the game ranked No. 9 in the country and the Cavaliers were ranked No. 8.
Warlick did not see game action in the first four games of the season.
“It is a hard year for freshman at JMU” to get playing time, said Warlick, who added the Dukes lost just one fi eld player from the 2007 team. “I knew what I was getting into. But it has been a great experience so far.”
Warlick said she hopes to see more playing time as a sophomore, since JMU is expected to lose several field players from this year’s team.
“I love the location,” added Warlick, who is taking 15 credit hours this semester. “The campus is great. You can walk to everything.”
JMU is 34-12 the past two seasons under head coach Antoinette Lucas, who is in her fifth season at the school. Lucas played in the World Cup and Olympics for the United States as a player.
“She is extremely intense. We have intense practices every single day,” Warlick said.
The Dukes won the Colonial Athletic Associaion title in 2006 and lost in the first round of the NCAA tournament. Last season JMU was 19-4 and lost 1-0 in the second round of the NCAA tourney to North Carolina, the eventual national champs.
Warlick, a 5-foot-6-inch-tall forward/midfielder, also played soccer at Colonial Forge.
Her roommate at JMU is Jordan Zarone, a Colonial Forge graduate and a freshman on the JMU women’s soccer team.
Warlick comes from an athletic family. Her older sister, Katie, recently graduated from Lynchburg College and played Division III volleyball there. She was one of the top players last season for Lynchburg. Her father ran track and played baseball at East Caro lina University.
Notes: Warlick played at Colonial Forge with Michelle Lane, now a freshman on the field hockey team at the University of Maryland …JMU plays at Richmond on Sept. 19 and at American University in Washington, D.C. on Sept. 21.