How a Summer in the Netherlands Catapulted Charlotte De Vries Back Amongst the Nation’s Best
By: Skyler Wilkes | @swilkes04
CitrusTV Field Hockey Beat Reporter
SYRACUSE, N.Y. – 35 women, ranging from ages 18 to 27, make up the United States national field hockey team. After playing for the U-17 and U-19 squads, Charlotte de Vries got the chance to play for the real club in the Netherlands this past summer as a part of the FIH Hockey Pro League. The Pennsylvania native became the 10th Syracuse player to represent America and the first since 2016.
SU’s captain recorded six starts, competing against some of the world’s best in Belgium, India and China. While being one of the younger players on the team, the senior saw a completely different side of the game. Despite going 1-7, it was still a valuable experience.
“Spending some time with the national team this past spring, my role wasn’t to be this big goal scorer, it was more to find corners and do the simple things right…now that I’m back at college, it’s a different level so I am learning to just be a shooter again,” explained de Vries.
Clearly, being overseas paid dividends on de Vries’ game. Through six matches, the reigning All-ACC Second Teamer has six goals and three assists for a total of 15 points. The forward ranks ninth in the country in points per game and 10th in goals. Normally that wouldn’t be very surprising for a three time All-American, but it’s actually the exact same numbers that she had in the entirety of last season.
One of the biggest changes for de Vries has been her shooting efficiency. After compiling an 11% clip in 2021, the senior has doubled it. She’s not only shooting more, but she’s doing it at a much more effective rate. As a result, the forward had her best match of this young campaign on Sunday against then-25th ranked Monmouth. The captain scored all three goals for the ‘Cuse, recording her first hat trick since 2019.
“I think she was very opportunistic and started to get to the areas that she needed to be in and she did her job which was to finish and make some great scoring opportunities for us,” said head coach Ange Bradley.
The intensity and high level of competition has given her the confidence to excel offensively and further strengthen her reputation as a scoring threat. With every goal coming off an assist, de Vries was able to garner what she learned over the summer as a role player and bring it to fruition. Ange Bradley’s squad is already proficient in passing, so having a “pure shooter” creates more trouble for the opposing defense.
Hungry to build off the strong showing, de Vries and 10th ranked Syracuse are preparing for their first conference matchup of the season against No. 18 Duke. The senior has three goals and an assist in four games versus the Blue Devils. It’s the 12th meeting all-time between the two programs and the first since SU eliminated Duke in the ACC Tournament last year. Overall, the Orange lead the series 9-2 and have won four straight. The contest is scheduled for 5 p.m. on Friday at J.S. Coyne Stadium.