Twins Genevieve and Adelaide Penzone have been teammates since birth.
After trying soccer, basketball, cheerleading, lacrosse, taekwondo and volleyball together, the pair settled on field hockey and are now playing through their final season as partners on the pitch at Ohio State.
While Adelaide Penzone said the pair have clear differences in personality, Genevieve said they share many of the same hobbies and friends.
“We don’t dress the same, but we do enjoy a lot of the same things. We do obviously play for the same team. We enjoy a lot of the same activities and pastimes,” Genevieve Penzone said. “We aren’t telepathic, but we feel strongly — like when one feels one way obviously I’m going to feel the same way.”
From their youth, Genevieve and Adelaide Penzone achieved success in a variety of sports, earning black belts in taekwondo and competing for a state champion high school lacrosse team at St. Francis De Sales.
Their mother, Patty Penzone, said she eventually pushed them away from volleyball due to a distaste for the attire.
Leaving a match through the back door of a gym, she saw a group of field hockey players leaving practice.
“They had long skirts on and big blouses, shirts with the sticks,” Patty Penzone said. “And I was like, ‘Who was that?’ They’re like, ‘That’s the field hockey team.’ And I’m like, ‘We’re doing field hockey.’”
Genevieve and Adelaide Penzone said their love for Ohio State field hockey started right after they picked up the sport. Genevieve said she has a signed poster from former Buckeye field hockey players.
“It’s actually really funny because for our middle school club team, we would come out and play during halftime for OSU games and be ball girls or at the end, do clinics, and we came to campus all the time,” Genevieve Penzone said.
She added that it’s exciting to be on the other end of things now.
“When you’re super young, it’s like you idolize these players. But then, now that you’re on the team, it’s like you are that personality that little kids are looking up to,” Genevieve Penzone said. “It’s just really cool to see.”
Ohio State field hockey head coach Jarred Martin said Genevieve and Adelaide Penzone have a competitiveness and love for field hockey and the university.
“They’ve loved Ohio State since they were born,” Martin said. “So that’s something that you can’t take for granted.”
Despite visiting 17 different schools during recruiting, Patty Penzone said Genevieve and Adelaide knew they wanted to come to Ohio State.
“They said nothing compared to Ohio State. They would go to another school and look at the school and be like, ‘Yeah, no.’” Patty Penzone said. “They just knew in their hearts that they wanted to be Buckeyes.”
The two saw immediate action on the field once they came to Ohio State. Genevieve Penzone, a midfielder, said she especially enjoys the defensive aspect of her role. Adelaide, a forward, has two assists so far this season.
This past season, they both received Academic All-Big Ten honors. This season, they have played an important role coming off the bench.
Love for Ohio State is felt by the rest of the family, too.
The Penzone family is a staple at Ohio State games, easily identifiable by the towering flag they fly by their tailgate before game time. Patty Penzone and father David have gone to every game except one.
“[Patty] graduated here. Her mom was on the dance team, and I grew up in Grandview, so this has been a part of our DNA for a very long time,” David Penzone said. “They always knew that they wanted to be Buckeyes.”
After field hockey’s Sunday match against Stanford, Genevieve and Adelaide Penzone took time to sign posters and memorabilia for the fans, young and old, who came out to watch them play on the field the twins always hoped they would play on.