As part of USA Field Hockey's Post- Collegiate HARROWines series, staff member Kait Mitchell catches up 2008 Olympian Jesse Gey for a quick Q & A.
Jesse Gey, a 2008 University of North Carolina grad, a former National Team player, a 2008 Olympian and a 2011 Pan American Games gold medalist, is about to ink another accomplishment onto her resume. As the captain of team Tembo of the 2013 Harrow Cup, Jesse is pulling from her vast credentials to make an impact as gigantic as the team’s mascot.
KM: You reached the zenith of field hockey by competing on the U.S. National Team. How is this opportunity of being chosen as a Harrow Cup captain compare to your extensive list of accolades?
JG: It’s a different kind of pressure. When I was competing on the U.S. National Team there was more of a personal pressure. You’re performing under a microscope. Now with the Harrow Cup and being a captain there’s a pressure to please the group and make the right decisions that will work best for the team.
KM: You selected the team name "Tembo" which is Swahili for elephant. Is there a personal connection there?
JG: I’m a big fan of elephants, so naturally when given the opportunity to choose a team name I picked it. Last weekend I flew to Colorado to see my former UNC and Harrow Cup teammate, Alli Tanner to design our uniforms. All I got to say is we’re going to be looking pretty fly.
KM: What was your strategy for selecting your team?
JG: This was very difficult. Lots of preparation went into my selection. It was important to do a lot of research and make sure some of the “sleepers” or the not so popular names were given fair attention. I also reached out to outside sources and different college coaches for their input.
KM: What has training been like with everyone so spread out?
JG: We have an email chain going and a few of the girls have been attending open plays. Next week half of us are actually attending an open play day at Temple University. It’s good core group to have out there.
KM: To you, why is it important to encourage post-collegiate hockey?
JG: Personally, I’ve been lucky to be able to continue playing after college with the national team. For most, their last game in college is the final time they ever really play. That’s just sad. It’s important we continue to grow the sport after our college days.
KM: What will you do with your slice of the pie if your team wins the 2013 Harrow Cup?
JG: Buy an airplane ticket somewhere or pay my bills.
KM: While browsing over your UNC Field Hockey bio I stumbled upon one of your little-known talents – dancing. You know, $10,000 is a big reason to bust a move. Any chance we’ll see you dance if you’re victorious?
JG: Not even a question. Yes, I’ll be dancing. You’ll probably see a Jesse original called the “jump rope.” It’s like the motion of jumping rope but with a little extra style. So keep an eye out for that.