For Jessi and Chelsy Coil, sisters and field hockey standouts at the Foxcroft School in Middleburg, being recruited by some of the top college programs in the country clearly underscores their love for the sport. But in case that weren't enough, one need only visit the Coil house.
"We have an indoor court that we built in our basement," said Chelsy, the younger of the sisters, referring to a playing area constructed to allow the sisters to practice indoors when they can't be outside. The court consists of a thin green carpet and homemade goals, and it has hosted many competitions between the sisters, both of whom should help Foxcroft improve from last season's 10-5-1 finish (tied for sixth in the ISL).
Most of the focus is on Jessi, a senior and three-time All-Extra pick who is a vocal leader to younger teammates. She is switching from left to center midfield this year to take on a larger role on offense, and her play last season attracted interest from some of the top Division I schools in the country, including Old Dominion, James Madison, Villanova and Holy Cross.
"It's a little nerve-racking. I'm not sure what I want to do, but it's pretty exciting," she said of being recruited. "I don't think about it. I just want to win."
Katie Kantz, entering her second year as the Foxcroft field hockey coach, sees the older Coil settling into the role of team leader.
"She has really set the tone for the season. She's assumed a leadership role, and the girls love her," said Kantz. "She'll stay after practice and work with the other girls without me even having to ask her. She has so much skill she can actually correct mistakes as if she were a coach. She just understands the game."
Jessi's graduation this spring might put a damper on the spirits of the team if not for the presence of Chelsy, who as a sophomore is receiving interest from colleges and showing teammates she is eager to continue her sister's legacy.
"I look up to her a lot," Chelsy said. "Her hits are so much bigger and stronger than mine right now, but I try to have my own style as well. But I take advice from her, too."
Chelsy said when it comes to college recruitment, she needs to look no further than her older sister for guidance.
"I think I've got it a lot easier. I'm just watching her go through it first so I've definitely got the easier road," Chelsy said.