Great coaches produce results.
This fall, Lindsay Kocher, the head coach of the Haddonfield field hockey team, produced results. Kocher led her team to a 21-2-1 season that culminated in a Central Jersey Group 1 trophy.
After losing the championship game last year in a shootout, Kocher said the team was determined not to let this season end the same way.
"I think they just came into preseason just really focused. They made the playoffs last year and were left with a bad taste in their mouths," Kocher said. "Their determination really help separate this team from some teams over the past few years."
Kocher, who played at Syracuse, is an exemplary role model for her players. She says she expects 100 percent from her players on and off the field and approaches the field with an attitude that demands hard work.
"As a player and a leader she has inspired me to - no matter how I'm playing - just to always keep the team up," captain Ana Buzzerd said. "There is always someone acting as a role model on the field. She has given me the confidence to do so."
Kocher, who has led Haddonfield for eight years, credits her passion for coaching from her many years of playing and the coaches she met along the way.
"Having different coaches throughout my life, the different influences they had on me as a person growing up, I always saw myself wanting to do that, hopefully making a difference in people's lives," Kocher said.
Kocher focuses on the day and task at hand with her athletes and tries not to dwell on issues from previous games or practices. Her mantra to her athletes before every game is to "work early and work together" Buzzerd.
"Anytime, even if it's a win, and we don't perform to best of our ability, we try to go back and fix what mistakes we made," Kocher said. "But I'm a big believer on focusing on that day, win or lose, taking one day at a time."
Kocher instills a positive energy in her players during practice that allow them to live up to their potential in games.
"I think that one of the great things about her is that she really believes in all of us and wants us to know that and wants us to live up our potential," Buzzard said.
She commits herself to the program for love of the game and to reflect the dedication she receives daily from her team. As a coach, she pushes herself to put up the time for her athletes because they're giving it up to her, Kocher said.