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Feb. 12, 2013

On Sunday, Feb. 10, the Virginia field hockey team participated in a Habitat for Humanity project, helping to build housing for displaced families in a trailer park that was being demolished in Charlottesville.The girls splintered off into small teams working on putting up drywall.

“My group was working on finishing up some closets,” said junior Hadley Bell. “The other people on the project had been working all weekend and were ahead of schedule so we just went in and finished up the work. A lot of the guys we worked with were really tired so they just showed us how to do it and then left it up to us, which was really fun. We worked in pairs so bonding with teammates outside of field hockey and working together really helped with teamwork.”

Some of the players, such as Chloe Pendlebury, grew up around construction. Others, like Jessica White, just seemed to have a natural talent.

“I was terrible,” Bell laughed, assessing her skills. “I could only do the glue gun, but I was really good at that.”

“My group consisted of Sarah Weber, Kelsey LeBlanc, and I and I don’t think any of us were really good, honestly,” admitted freshman Taylor Brown. “I worry a little about the structure of that closet. But it was still really fun. The time went by so fast. We were there for four hours, but it went by so fast.”

With plenty of veteran builders around to supervise, the closets got completed with their structural integrity in tact.

While all of the players were excited about helping out in the community, Brown a Charlottesville native, was even more happy to jump in and help out people in her home town.

“I had always wanted to give back to the community, especially since it is my home community, but it’s hard to find the time to do that with playing field hockey,” Brown said. “So it was great to be able to use field hockey to give back to my home community and the University’s community.”

Bell was proud of what she accomplished, but is also excited about the future.

“When I was leaving, I was looking at the houses and the state they are in now and wanting to go back in a couple of weeks and see them finished,” Bell said. “There were still a couple of trailers next door that hadn’t been demolished yet, so I was comparing the two from what it had been to what it would be. It was really cool to see what we helped to do.”

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