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Duke junior Ashley Camano will keep a weekly blog for the 2012 season, giving Duke fans an inside look at life on the Blue Devil field hockey team.

Look for Ashley's blog every week during the season on

We were running. No-sprinting. Sweating and stressed. We were intense and we wanted to win. We weren't playing field hockey-but Capture the Flag instead.

On Saturday morning, after a thrilling overtime victory against California, we showed up to practice in our usual routine. A later start to the day allowed us a few minutes more of precious slumber, and we entered the locker room like any other day. We pulled up our socks and laced our shoes, warmed up and stretched and awaited the practice agenda from the coaches. Just as Lauren Blazing and I were about to put on our goalkeeping equipment and begin to get some shots on goal, the coaches flagged us down and told the team we wouldn't need our sticks or equipment just yet-although, in retrospect, leaving our shinguards on might have been a noble idea.

We were divided into two teams-competitive as ever. We flipped our pinnies to our respective white or blue, depending on what team we were divided to, and began the battle. Our modified flags, comprised of a beach towel and a pair of yellow socks, were hidden across the battle-torn whole of East Campus, using the Bell Tower and the academic quad as barriers for our match.

Needless to say, things got heated as the game escalated, and a winner was deemed only after close to 40 minutes of dodging, sprinting and puppy-guarding the bases set out by the coaches. Girls were crawling through bushes and sneaking over hills and behind trees. I saw my life flash before my eyes as Amanda Kim chased me down a hill covered in roots and fallen leaves all in the name of competition. We couldn't find Martine Chichizola by the end of the game, but that's nothing new...

The game was followed up by some repetitions of our set pieces to get in a good groove and start the week off right-a perfect combination of fun and business to get our minds clear and ready for our final scheduled match of the year this Saturday against UVA.

From Durham
Ashley Camano

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