June 3, 2014
East Lansing, Mich. - Michigan State senior field hockey players Allie Ahern, Abby Barker, and Becky Stiles have been recognized as some of the top field hockey athletes in the country and were selected to compete in the US Women's National Field Hockey Championship. In addition, sophomore Kristin Matula has also been selected to play in the U21 National Championship.
The athletes will train at High Performance sites throughout the country in the hopes of being named to the Women's National Championship squad for their region. The six regional squads then face off June 16-21, followed by the U21 National Championship June 22-26. All competition will be held in Lancaster, PA. at the Spooky Nook Sports Complex .
The National Championship serves as the selection process for the United States Women's National Squad. Ahern, Barker, and Stiles, also competed in this summer program in 2013 with the other elite players in the country. The National Championship features not only the top collegiate players, but also current National Team members and members of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Women's Field Hockey Team.
Matula has been selected as one of the top 72 U-21 athletes in the country and will be playing for a spot at the Junior National Camp, which selects the 2014-2015 Junior National Teams.
"I am thrilled for Allie, Abby, Becky and Kristin to have been included in the selections," said head coach Helen Knull. "They all have proved deserving of competing in these events. The experiences they will gain playing against the best in the country will only help develop their game. All four of these players have a major impact for the Spartans on and off the field, and I am excited to see how they compete at the next level."
Ahern, Barker, and Stiles are no stranger to national competition. All three participated in the U-21 Championship last year and Stiles competed for the USA U-21 team at the Junior Pan Ams in 2012. Matula played at the Futures Elite Championship last summer.