By Melanie Cane
Assistant Coach Charlotte Tierney, Captains Julia Howe and Molly Mackie, and Head Coach Alex Bean
The new Holy Child field hockey coaches, Alex Bean and Charlotte Tierney have big shoes to fill. They replaced Barb Lorys and Cheryl O’Shea, who coached the team for 13 years. While a student at Holy Child, Tierney played under Lorys and O’Shea for four years, and went on to play for Georgetown University. Bean played for Wesleyan.
The coaches will rely on senior co-captains Julie Howe and Molly Mackie, as well as the seven other returning players, to make the transition smooth.
Coaches Bean and Tierney are excited to work with a talented group of returning players, as well as the nine newcomers who are “motivated, hard-working athletes with a fast learning curve.” They look forward to the challenge of developing a cohesive team culture. “We know if we buckle down and make each one of our players stronger and work to play with a purpose day in and day out that will benefit us this season and for many seasons to come. We can’t wait to see where the season takes us.”
The coaches worked closely with the former coaches last season and want to thank them for their dedicated years to the Holy Child field hockey program. “We hope to see them at many games this season!”
The seven seniors, front row: Gabby Rivera, Lily Hurley, and Ginny Cacsire; back row: Carly Okon, CeCe Hylton, Olivia Califano, and Cate Kaplan
Former JV coach Jennifer Walsh moved up to take over as Holy Child’s new head Varsity coach. She says she’s counting on her seven seniors, including captains Cece Hylton, Carly Okon, and Gabby Rivera. Hylton is a dynamic player who plays setter and right side hitter. Okon is the middle hitter who is a smart player at the net. Rivera, a big presence in the back row and is the main line of defense.
Nine veteran players, as well as returning assistant coach Maureen Fearon, will guide the four new players.
Coach Walsh expects to have a successful season because the team has depth. “We can put any six players on the court and be successful.”
The coaches are looking forward to watching the team grow on and off the court. “We are off to a fresh start, and we are counting on the girls to put everything they have out on their court.”
Captains Jax Pace and Ryan Delane
Mike Rivera is the only head coach returning to Holy Child for the fall season. He, along with returning assistant coach Lindsey Ferris, are counting on senior captains Ryan Delane and Jax Pace, as well as nine other returning players.
Last year, the team struggled to adjust to Coach Rivera’s style of play, but the co-captains said the team caught on to by the end of the season and the seven new players are quick learners.
The team cohesion and chemistry is extremely strong, says the coach, as is the defense, which is anchored by Madi Warne, Emma Kryza, and goalie Giulia DeVita. Rivera also has high praise for midfielders Grace Mensi and Pace and striker Delane.
The Gryphons have set their sights on qualifying for post-season play. They open against Riverdale, at home, on September 8.