We'd like to give a shout out to SquadLocker Coach of the year finalist, Lauren Bouchard - Coach in Hopedale, MA
Considered Submission for Coach Bouchard:
"Lauren Bouchard was hired to coach the Hopedale Varsity Field Hockey Team just last season, and she took on that role, and then some, head-on. She immediately contacted myself and my co-captain to get to know the program and the girls, so that coming into the fall season, she could implement drills/practices to maximize our performance as a team. She quickly adapted to our style of play and level of talent, and sought to increase the latter through basic technical training and positive encouragement.
"Coach Bouchard worked with the team and myself to develop effective game strategy, which led us into a very successful season and notable playoff run. Throughout the season, we learned to not only respect, but to admire Coach Bouchard, and we looked forward to her pre-game motivation and positive attitude everyday.
"One of her classic lines before games/practices was, 'it's a beautiful day for some field hockey!' which sparked joy across the whole program. She fostered our team culture, and respected our traditions, like reading quotes before every game and chanting specific cheers during our warm-up. She even introduced some of her own traditions, like the Sailor's Knot and Hopedale Heart awards, given to two excelling players after every game. She danced with us on the bus to away games, she got involved in our academic lives, and she made sure to check up on every athlete, even after the season had ended. She comes to my other sporting events, concerts, and shows, and she cheers me on in all my endeavors. Since she teaches AP United States History at her school, she is constantly giving me resources and study materials for my exam, and making sure that I feel more than prepared (and she's not even my teacher!)
"Prior to her time at Hopedale, Coach Bouchard founded a youth program to promote field hockey in a neighboring town. Since last season, she re-branded the entire club to include Hopedale, as well as surrounding towns, into the Blackstone Valley Field Hockey Club, which trains hundreds of young athletes to compete in tournaments and showcases. Not only does she support our Varsity Team, but she is creating a sustainable program to increase the level of talent across the whole region.
"Coach Bouchard is one of the most amazing people I have ever had the pleasure of working with. She actively seeks to make the world around her a better place, and she radiates positivity. She is adaptable to the group or situation she is in, and she is completely devoted to any task that she starts. In my last season with the Hopedale Field Hockey program, I am beyond excited to continue working with Coach Bouchard, and I am so grateful for her passion and commitment to our relationship, our team, and our sport.