Ulster Hockey Coaching Awards 2019 – 2020
Ulster Hockey is delighted to announce the winners of the 2020 Coaching Awards.
Maria Doherty (Ballymoney) – Children’s Coach of the Year
As well as coaching most age groups in the club, Maria is the Youth Coordinator for Ballymoney Hockey Club. Maria set up ‘Toon Tots’ for pre-schoolers and there’s been over 50 children involved in this programme over the past year. Maria is also key in advocating for and linking the club’s Youth section to the Senior club. As well as being a high quality coach herself, she trains and organises other coaches and volunteers for all the coaching sessions for U16’s and also helps train and utilise her club’s Young Hockey Leaders. In 2019, Maria worked with Hockey Ireland and Ulster Hockey on the Tricks 4 Sticks development programme to expand the club offering to include a boy’s only section.
Francesca Brown (Ards) – Young Coach of the Year
Frankie is a fantastic role model and coach at Ards Ladies Hockey Club. She has made a massive impact in recent year’s, growing the club from around 90 players to 150. Frankie is innovative and very proactive coach, who ensures her junior club standards are kept at the highest possible level. She organises coaching development days throughout the season to educate the clubs coaches, and implements structures within our training sessions to maximize the benefits of each session. Frankie was also the driving force behind Ards u15 and u18 indoor squads. Outside of Frankie’s club duties, she is also involved in coaching within Ulster Hockey’s Talent Development programme.
Simon Bell (Queens Ladies) – Performance Coach of the Year
Simon Bell has been Head Coach of Queen’s Ladies 1st XI for 13 seasons, bringing the club from one to five ladies teams during this time period.
Queen’s Ladies 1st XI won the Ulster Premier League and finished the season unbeaten, winning a total of 14 games. They also had a success season in Hockey Ireland’s EY2, and their promotion to the EY League was stopped by the outbreak of COVID19.
While his loyalties lay with Queens he always tries to do his best for other clubs to accommodate the greater hockey community as a whole and is a great asset to Ulster and Irish Hockey.