As the final seconds ran off the clock in Maryland field hockey's win against then-No. 9 Louisville on Sunday afternoon, Hannah Bond clenched her fist and joined the Terps in a postgame celebration near their own 23-meter line.
The freshman defender then made her way toward Maryland's sideline, as the Terps thanked the referees and Cardinals before reflecting on defeating their first ranked opponent this season. Despite the circumstances, it was a typical sequence for one of coach Missy Meharg's top young defensive players.
Bond has had notable success throughout her field hockey career, and to this point, that trend has continued. There are few stats to quantify it, but five games into No. 11 Maryland's season, Bond has anchored the backline, limiting opposing attackers with a presence that extends the length of the field.
"She does everything I ask her to," goalkeeper Sarah Holliday said. "She's always hustling back. I don't have a single complaint about her."
For Bond, who joined Meharg's Terps from England and has been playing field hockey since she was 7 years old, the preseason team building exercise Meharg organized provided an opportunity not only to earn her teammates' trust, but also to develop connections away from the pitch.
The Terps wore fleeces in a pool and were challenged not to allow the teammate next to them to drown. The second day's training was hockey-based. Since the activities, Bond has been thrust into a starting role, and her presence has been felt.
On several occasions against Towson and Louisville in the Terrapin Invitational last weekend, Bond intercepted passes, which seemingly contributed to Maryland's nine combined goals between both contests. Holliday and the Terps have praised her effort. But she views making plays as a responsibility.
"It is just where I feel I need to be on the field at that moment in time," Bond said. "We have a structure to how it should be around the back, but just by the communication of the other players around me, it lets me move around a bit more and fill in the holes or make those interceptions when necessary."
Bond admits she didn't know much about America and its culture before playing in College Park, perhaps making her early success more impressive. Her teammates, though, have facilitated the adjustment and changed that quickly.
The Oxted native has started all five matches this season, recording an assist in the process.
"It's my job to make the connections like pass in and pass out again, which you'll see having not played with them a lot it's quite tricky to make those connections straightaway," Bond said. "It's just nice to be able to keep developing with them."
Still, Bond's timely adjustment is likely the result of her extensive resume. She won gold medals at the 2016 U18 Futures Cup and 2016 U17 UK School games and has helped Maryland's defense slow opposing attackers.
Most recently, Louisville's leading scorer, Nicole Woods, was held off the board. For Bond, that has become the expectation.