Van Sickle Inducted into Delaware Sports Museum & Hall of Fame

Portions of Content Courtesy of Delaware Sports Museum & Hall of Fame

WILMINGTON, Del. - Caitlin Van Sickle is one of nine prominent individuals whose outstanding accomplishments in the world of athletics have brought distinction to the state of Delaware over the last half-century and has been selected for induction into the Delaware Sports Museum and Hall of Fame.

The 2024 inductees are Cliff Brumbaugh, Eric Cannon, Gary Chelosky, Cheryl Hamilton, Marcy Levine, Dave Raymond, Jonathan Stoklosa, Kevin Tresolini and Caitlin “Poppy” Van Sickle (Field Hockey).

The newest members will be officially inducted and honored in a ceremony on Thursday, May 23, 2024 at the Chase Center on the Riverfront in Wilmington, Del. Tickets to the 48th annual banquet are $75 each and can be purchased by clicking here. The deadline to reserve tickets is Friday, May 17. The event will start with a social hour and silent auction at 5:30 p.m. ET, followed by the dinner and ceremony at 6:45 p.m. ET.

Following a tremendous career, defender and Rio 2016 Olympian Caitlin "Poppy" Van Sickle announced her retirement from the senior squad after competing in 148 international matches.

A Delaware native, Caitlin was originally a basketball player and desired to excel but fell in love with field hockey when she first started playing in fourth grade. She began playing competitively in seventh grade and played at Tower Hill High School, where she helped the team to three state championships. She was named all-state her sophomore, junior and senior years and was also dubbed player of the year her junior and senior seasons.

She went on to play collegiately at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. As a Tar Heel she was a three-time team Most Valuable Player (2010, 2011, 2012), three-time first-team All-America (2010, 2011, 2012), three-time Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Defensive Player of the Year (2010, 2011, 2012), three-time All-ACC and All-ACC tournament and 2012 ACC Tournament MVP. In her time wearing Carolina blue she helped win two ACC Championships (2011, 2012) and played in the NCAA title game all four years, winning a championship in 2009.

Caitlin’s journey to Team USA started when she wove her way through the Olympic Development Pathway. After joining Futures in 2004, she participated in the National Futures Championship, multiple Junior National Camps and was a member of High Performance for six years. In 2010, she was named to the U.S. U-21 Women’s National Team and a year later went on a tour with the squad. Following her performance at the Women’s National Championship in 2013, she was named to the USWNT.

She earned her first international cap wearing the red, white and blue at the Four Nations event in Auckland, New Zealand. That same year she helped USA to a second place finish at the Pan American Cup in Mendoza, Argentina, falling to the host nation in the final. In the years following, she participated in multiple test series and international tournaments along with world championship experiences. In 2015, she aided the squad to a fifth-place finish at the FIH Hockey World League Semifinals and was named an alternate athlete to the Pan American Games. A year later she was part of an incredible performance at the 2016 Hockey Champions Trophy in London, England. As the lowest world ranked team, USA clinched the bronze after a shootout win over Australia. Continuing with that momentum, USA impressed the world that August at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games earning a historical fifth place finish.

In 2017, Caitlin was part of the team that stunned the world hockey scene at the FIH Hockey World League Semifinals when they upended the only two teams to upset them at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in two shootouts to earn gold. Also in that year she played in the last edition of the FIH Hockey World League Final. The next year she competed in the Vitality Hockey Women’s World Cup and in 2019 was part of the first season of the worldwide league, the FIH Pro League. In August, she helped USA to a third-place finish at the Pan American Games in Peru and was part of the squad that performed an impressive comeback at the FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifier against India, but the effort ultimately fell short.

Caitlin retired from Team USA in December 2019 having competed in 148 international matches. During her six and half years, she recorded nine goals and was a key element on the defensive line and as a penalty corner inserter. She has since shifted into the coaching role. She was the director for PowerHouse Field Hockey Club, assistant coach for Princeton University in 2021 and since 2022 has been the assistnat coach at UNC. Van Sickle was on the staff at the 2023 Hockey5s Pan American Cup and 2024 FIH Hockey5s World Cup.