Serving the scholastic field hockey and lacrosse community since 1998

August 14, 2022 — New opportunities for one of the sport’s legends

Last May, John Savage, the head field hockey coach at Mamaroneck (N.Y.), retired from coaching the team that he had been a part of for the last 26 years, winning three state championships.

This fall, he is coaching a team which he had volunteer-coached during the global pandemic. That school is Newtown (Conn.), located where Savage lives.

It is a bit of an odd twist, as Savage is taking over for Ellen Goyda, who will now be coaching at the developmental level as Newtown Middle School’s inaugural field hockey coach.

Savage, a resident of Newtown since 2015, had gotten to know many of the incoming players the last couple of years during the pandemic.

“I really love coaching these young ladies. I just like to help out and be around young people and hopefully have a positive impact on their lives,” Savage tells The Newtown Bee.

Newtown, in 2019, was the No. 1 seed in the CIAC Class L tournament after a 16-0 regular season record. It is this kind of potential Savage hopes to harness.

“I’ve learned that it’s a mental game as well as a physical game. It has to be a team game where personal glory is put aside for team success,” Savage tells The Bee. “If you want to be a championship program you have to love each other.”

Should Savage be able to bring the Nighthawks to a state championship, he would belong to a small club of field hockey coaches. Only Jodi Hollamon (Maryland, Delaware) and Daan Polders (Colorado, Pennsylvania) have ever taken teams to public-school state championships in more than one state.

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