BOSTON (CBS) – Players from two local colleges are getting ready for the Final 4 playoffs.
Women’s field hockey teams at Babson and Tufts head to upstate New York for the semi-finals on Saturday. They’re not playing each other in the first round, but are hoping to do just that for the NCAA Championship.
It’s the last practice for the Babson squad before their road trip, after having their best season ever, a 21-2 record, with 15 shutouts.
“Their work ethic and focus has been excellent since day one. They really take each drill, each day very seriously. They compete at practice, and our biggest focus is that we’re always outworking our opponents,” says Babson coach Julie Ryan.
This is the first time Babson has reached the Final 4, and their work is cut out for them. The Division 3 semi-finals pits the team against top seed Messiah College.
“One thing we’ve really tried to focus on is getting better every day, and I think that’s what’s got us so far this post season,” says Babson player Kelsi McDougle.
“Everybody has worked so hard and as a team, everybody came together to achieve something that we had not even dreamed of doing,” adds Ashley Tango, a Babson starter.
Meanwhile the Tufts women’s team has also earned a Final 4 spot. “We had an excellent year this year. We’re 18 and 2,” says coach Tina Matera.
They’re up against Salisbury University in their semi-final matchup. “We just have been clicking all over the place and the girls are really playing for each other, and it’s been really fun,” Matera adds.
“This is one of the best teams I think I’ve ever been on. I can honestly say these are 22 of my best friends,” says Tufts player Dominique Zarrella.
If both teams win Saturday, they’ll face each other for the NCAA Championship on Sunday.
“We’ve had an incredible season,” says Babson’s Ashley Tango.
“I’m ecstatic. This is a dream come true,” adds Dominique Zarrella from Tufts.
The daughter of our own Dan Roche is on the Babson team, so Danny is trying to calm his own nerves. Good luck to both teams this weekend.