HISTORY IN THE MAKING: Malden High School is first district in state to host an All-Boys Field Hockey Team
Special to the Advocate from Malden High School
The Malden Public Schools have made history by becoming the first district in Massachusetts with an All- Boys Field Hockey team sanctioned by the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA).
Malden Public Schools Athletic Director Charlie Conefrey said Malden High School intends to be the first in Massachusetts to field an all-boys team in MIAA competition, a move which has already been okayed by the MIAA.
While the MIAA allows coed field hockey teams — locally in the Greater Boston League, Malden and Everett this season now field coed teams — work is under way to create an All-Boys league as interest and participation increases.
To that end, the MIAA and USA Field Hockey, which oversees national operations and development for both men’s and women’s field hockey —in conjunction with the Malden Public Schools— are jointly hosting a Boys and Girls Field Hockey Clinic featuring Head Men’s National Team Coach Harry Singh tomorrow, Saturday, October 29 at Macdonald Stadium, 15 Pearl St., Malden.
The clinic is designed for either present or prospective Field Hockey Coaches, Referees and Boys and Girls players. The final segment of the clinic is for Boys Only and runs from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
The clinic is running from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. being held in three segments for those of different interests: 9:00-10:00 a.m. (Coaches and Referees); 10:00-11:30 a.m. (Girls and Boys from Grades 7-12); and 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m. (Boys Only).
“We hope boys high school field hockey will take off in Massachusetts and that soon, many boys teams will be competing and representing their schools in interscholastic competitions,” USA Field Hockey Director of National Development Susan Goggin said in an online report. “The opportunity for boys in field hockey is tremendous. Field hockey is loved by men across the globe for its athleticism, skill and fast-pace. We welcome boys to come give it a try and are confident boys of all ages will fall in love with the game.”
Malden Public Schools Athletic Director Charlie Conefrey said there has been a great deal of interest in Field Hockey at Malden High School, with boys participating for a number of years now on a coed basis.
“We wanted to be ready this year in the event we had a sufficient number of players to have an All-Boys Team,” Conefrey said. “We nearly did, but decided to keep the coed model this year.
“We are optimistic we may be able to reach our goal for next Fall Season,” Conefrey said, “and hopefully, with the help of events such as this and also the support and promotion by the MIAA statewide, we can find other school districts to join us.
“The bottom line is we want more and as many student-athletes to participate in interscholastic athletics as we can across the Commonwealth,” Conefrey, who is a member of the MIAA Board of Directors, told the Advocate. “A proven way to accomplish this goal is to increase and vary the options among the sports that districts offer. We will continue to do that locally, regionally and statewide.”