USA Field Hockey Weekly Report

Nov. 12, 2013, 5:37 p.m. (ET)
USA Field Hockey Weekly Report-Week of November 11, 2013

USA Field Hockey’s Team USA and Alumni Celebration will take place during NCAA Final Four Weekend. Susan Nottingham, USA Field Hockey Board of Directors member, is hosting the upcoming Team USA and Alumni Celebration and all are invited! You do not have to be a past member of Team USA to attend. Here is your personal invitation from Susan:

November 22-24 will be a very exciting weekend in my hometown. For the first time ever, college teams from Divisions I, II, and III will arrive to compete in their respective national championship tournaments. While the DII and DIII events are being held at the former National Training Center in Virginia Beach, Va. the NCAA Division I Final Four will be held at nearby Old Dominion University. As is customary, the very popular Senior All-Star Games are scheduled for that Saturday, so spectators can enjoy three solid days of high-end hockey culminating in Sunday’s games, where new National Champions will be crowned. It’s worth noting that our friends at the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) have scheduled their annual meeting here, too, providing ample opportunity to connect and re-connect with colleagues from the all across the hockey community.

Having so many coaches, former players, officials, friends and fans in town provides a perfect occasion for USA Field Hockey to host an event specifically for our adult members. And, since six athletes from our National Team announced retirements this year, we’ll be paying special tribute to them. The honorees are Jesse Gey, Claire Laubach, Keli Smith-Puzo, Kayla Bashore-Smedley, Amy Tran-Swensen and Arjan Reyatt.
With that said, please join us for a very special evening at Norfolk Yacht & Country Club, overlooking the beautiful Lafayette and Elizabeth Rivers. The date is Saturday night, November 23, running from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Tickets are $40/person, and include a sumptuous cocktail buffet featuring fabulous local fare and a cash bar. However, tickets must be purchased in advance (by 11/15) as headcounts must be provided to the chef. You can register for the event by clicking here

We’d also like to recognize any guests who represented USA on the National Team, regardless of the decade. If you have old photographs that can be scanned and emailed to us, we encourage you to send them to Meagan Connolly ( She’s eagerly collecting the images. The older, the better!

Finally, City of Norfolk officials caution that a parade, with a route winding through the downtown area, is also scheduled for that night. They expect an influx of 80,000 people which means street closures, crowded restaurants, heavy traffic and very limited parking. Unless you want to watch the parade, it’s best to avoid that area altogether. (Don’t worry, Norfolk Yacht can easily be reached from Virginia Beach by taking I-64 to Terminal Blvd., which avoids parade-related congestion.)

The following week, many of you will no doubt be traveling to Festival to coach, recruit, volunteer or officiate. So, please take advantage of this relaxing night in Norfolk, designed for YOU, because who knows when we’ll have this “perfect storm” of events again?  

Hope to see you there,

Susan Nottingham, Board Member, USA Field Hockey

Congratulations to Lurah Hess on being appointed as the Tournament Director for the Pan Am Youth Olympic Qualifier for Women in Montevideo, Uruguay. This tournament will take place February 10 –16, 2014, and is one of the first international events using the new Hockey 5’s format. Lurah has worked very hard as a judge and tournament official at numerous events around the world and this will be her first Tournament Director appointment. Lurah is a great representative and ambassador for USA Field Hockey. We want to wish her well on this prestigious appointment and continued success as a Tournament Director.

Last week I did not hear much direct feedback from the piece regarding concussing in sport. There was one comment left on our website where the weekly report is displayed referencing a recent event in LA. It was represented that a set of parents were placing a claim against a coach over proper tackling technique. The comment went on to say that their son had been paralyzed during a Pop Warner football event. If that is true, it is sad for all involved…the athlete…parents…coaches…and everyone else. We all are a part of sport and accidents happen, but we also know that proper coaching does mitigate the potential of injuries. 

USA Field Hockey has gone through the search process and will soon announce the appointment of a USA Field Hockey Coaching and Athlete ID Director. We have an incredibly high level of applicants. The position’s new incumbent will produce an array of coaching tools for all levels of coaches as well as produce tools for aspiring athletes and those that are experienced. It is a position we have long needed in field hockey and one of the purposes is to provide safety in sport through proper coaching technique. In several weeks’ time, we will announce the new person (not all the details have been completed as yet) and also provide some context of what the person specifically will be doing and in what sequence tools will be prepared and made available. This is great stuff, and we are excited about the possibilities.

The Conan O’Brien Show: Happy birthday to the Lamborghini automobile company. Lamborghini is now 50 years old. You can tell Lamborghini is 50 because it bought itself a Porsche.

Have a great week! 

Steven Locke
Executive Director
USA Field Hockey