American Turban

Firsts in NCAA field hockey

Ashpal Kaur Bhogal, left, and Sofia Walia, right. (Source: Rutgers Field Hockey)

Ashpal Kaur Bhogal (left) and Sofia Walia (right). (Source: Rutgers Field Hockey)

Sofia Walia and Ashpal Kaur Bhogal — two Sikh women at Rutgers University in New Jersey — have become the first Sikh women to play NCAA Division I field hockey (it turns out that they are not the first — see update below):

“It’s great because there are a lot of Sikh people on campus but they’re not involved in a lot of activities, especially sports,” [Sikh Student Association President Simran Farmah] said. “We never really had any Sikh athletes. Especially at Rutgers, it’s nice to see the diversity even in our athletics and it makes us proud that they’re Sikh.”

Sofia Walia and Ashpal Kaur Bhogal, of Canada and England respectively, were already accomplished players in field hockey when they joined the Rutgers Scarlett Knights.

Read more at The Daily Targum.

"Freshman back Sofia Walia is one of two Sikh players on the Knights’ roster this season. She has nine points for Rutgers." (Photo: Tian Li | The Daily Targum)

“Freshman back Sofia Walia is one of two Sikh players on the Knights’ roster this season. She has nine points for Rutgers.” (Photo: Tian Li | The Daily Targum)

MAY 22, 2014 UPDATE: I was informed by a reader that, as it turns out, two other Sikh women played in NCAA Division I field hockey before Sofia Walia and Ashpal Kaur Bhogal. Amrit Cheema played at Stanford University from 1999 to 2003 and Sharan Kalla played at UC Berkeley from 2001 to 2003. The correction is appreciated.

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