NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Chaney Kalinich (Glen Ellyn, Ill.), a rising senior goalkeeper on the Yale field hockey team, recently took advantage of an opportunity to gain international playing experience. Kalinich, who spent last summer in Puerto Rico working for the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's Dengue Branch, played for the Puerto Rican National Team in the FIH Hockey Series Open in Salamanca, Mexico last month.
Puerto Rico finished third out of five teams, behind first-place Canada and second-place Mexico and ahead of fourth-place Panama and fifth-place Guatemala. Puerto Rico went 2-2, beating Panama 8-0 and Guatemala 5-0. The team was coached by Eleuterio Lastra Serrano.
Kalinich's favorite game was against Mexico on June 10. She described the teams as evenly matched, with Puerto Rico's fitness level balancing out Mexico's technical level. Mexico eventually came away with a 4-0 win, scoring three goals on penalty corners.
Kalinich initially started training with the Puerto Rican team last summer, and plans to continue the relationship when possible. She is coming back from an injury that cost her the entire 2017 Yale season, so the opportunity to get back on the field this spring was particularly helpful. She also appreciated the effort that the team had to make to play after last fall's devastating hurricane.
"The Puerto Rican team's support through my injury meant the world to me," said Kalinich. "Their determination to play, in the face of remarkable obstacles for the past year, is astounding. I can't wait for the next time I get to play with them."
One of the other highlights of her time in Mexico came when Kalinich connected with the U.S. men's goalkeepers Jonathan Klages and David Kristof as they were watching Puerto Rico vs. Mexico's men's team. The U.S. men finished first.
Kalinich is a graduate of Glenbard West High School and played for Windy City Field Hockey Club. She is a molecular biophysics and biochemistry major in Davenport College at Yale. Her father, Kevin Kalinich '84, played football at Yale and coached football at Michigan.
Report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity