Alice Puckett ’77 named new field hockey coach


Kishan Patel

Alice Puckett takes over as head coach of the field hockey team seen here winning its second championship in a row. Puckett now feels pressure from herself to win again next season and three-peat as champions.

After coming off two consecutive championships and 10 years of coaching, varsity field hockey head coach Gary Scholl will be departing from his position as head coach and welcoming a new head coach, alumna Alice Puckett class of ‘77.

Puckett is a well known field hockey coach, who has won multiple state championships. “Her resumé is unmatched,” Athletic Director Steve Teter said.

Previous to coaching at JC, Puckett worked at Fallston High School for 23 years. “Leaving there is super hard, a big decision,” Puckett said.

Over a month ago, Puckett asked Scholl if there was a position for coaching field hockey. “I have found that it’s time to retire [from teaching P.E.] and coaching is what I’m really interested in. I emailed Scholl and he got the ball rolling,” Puckett said.

“We are very excited with her coming to JC. She brings a wealth of experience and success in the field hockey world,” Teter said. According to Puckett, she is also excited to start coaching at JC but knows that “there is lot of pressure on the three-peat.”

Along with the excitement of Puckett’s new position, field hockey members are sad to see Scholl leave. “Learning about it [Scholl leaving] was sad because he has coached me since freshman year. I was on JV but I got moved up near the middle of the year. So it’s upsetting to not have him for my senior season,” junior midfielder Charlotte Haggerty said.

“I don’t have the sophisticated knowledge that Puckett has or the recruiting power. I feel really comfortable turning the program over to her,” Scholl said.

The last two years coaching have been the most rewarding for Scholl, so he plans on still supporting the team even in his retirement from coaching. “I will be the biggest cheerleader,” Scholl said.

Puckett is excited as well that Scholl plans on sticking around. “He asked us if he could be on the sidelines at games and [Assistant Coach] Katie and I both were excited to know that he will still be around,” Puckett said.

Thanks to Scholl, the field hockey team has modified Native American traditions. These traditions brought the team together and allowed Scholl to make good connections with the players.

The players feel that these traditions are a highlight of being a part of the field hockey team. “I love the Indian traditions because it helps bring the team together,” said junior defender Claire Pika. The question is, will these traditions remain?

“I think we need to take a wait and see, I don’t want to interfere with the new coaches. They know team bonding is good and they will develop their own traditions, I don’t want them to feel any type of obligation towards that whatsoever,” Scholl said.

Scholl is not opposed to continuing the traditions if asked. “But if I was asked to do some of the things I would be open to it, but I don’t want them to feel there is a requirement for that,” Scholl said.

Adriana Guidi is an Entertainment Editor for the Patriot and