Sports awards: Athletes, coaches recognised

BayTrust and Sport Bay of Plenty are proud to announce the recipients of the BayTrust Scholarships.

The scholarships recognise athletes and coaches and aim to support Bay of Plenty sporting talent achieve on the national and international sporting stage and for coaches to develop new skills that can be delivered back to the community.

The scholarships are funded from BayTrust's $400,000 annual contribution to Sport Bay of Plenty's CoachForce programme.

Both scholarships are open to sports people residing in the region covered by the BayTrust and Sport Bay of Plenty, with the intention that the coaching expertise and sporting talent is retained in the Bay.

The Athlete Scholarships are open to any athlete from the Bay of Plenty aged 16-23 who has achieved national representative level at their sport, while the Coach Scholarships are for those coaching at a recognised and endorsed level by their respective regional sporting organisation.

A remarkably high number of quality applications were received that highlighted the exceptional sporting and coaching talent that exists within the Bay of Plenty region.

BayTrust Athlete Scholarships in the Western Bay:

Amy Robinson (Ohauiti) - Athletics/Hockey

Amy's resume is an impressive list of achievements. This year Amy placed 3rd at the Vanuatu Junior Open and her team placed 3rd at NZ Secondary School Cross Country. Amy placed 2nd in heptathlon at NZ Multi-Event U17, and at Club Nationals Amy placed 2nd in long jump and 1st in the 4x100m and 4x400m. Amy also placed 1st at NZ Age Groups U17 Beach Volleyball and Women's Hockey Intercity Waikato/BOP Competition. Amy has been named in the NZ U18 Hockey Squad and has been selected in the Long List Athletics Squad for the Youth Olympics.

Anna Higgins (Tauranga South) - Canoe Slalom

Anna is a member of the Tauranga Girls' College Canoe Slalom team who this year at the NZ Secondary Schools championships placed 1st in four events and 2nd in two events. Anna also received the Lucy Ford trophy for U18 champion K1 and DR and the Heather Jull trophy for the best overall U18 girl paddler. At the NZ Open National Canoe Slalom championships, Anna's team came 1st overall K1 women's team and Anna herself was ranked 2nd K1 NZ U18 girl. Anna's future goals include World Championships and Youth Olympics in the next two years.

Ben Johnston (Papamoa) - Surf Lifesaving

Ben is well on his way to achieving his goal for the rescue worlds this month, where he hopes to have his team, U20 NZ Team Surf Lifesaving, win the U20 World's title. Most recently, Ben has competed at the 2012 Australian Pool Rescue championships where his best result was 1st in the U19 4x25m manikin carry relay in which he set an Australasian record. In the 2012 Northern Regional Pool championships, Ben was 1st in five events. Ben has a long term goal of being selected for the 2014 Worlds team to compete in France.

Cameron Hayes (Tauranga South) - Waterpolo

Western Bay's Cameron Hayes has had a busy year, including being a member of Tauranga Boys' College Senior A Volleyball team and the BOP U16 Surf Lifesaving team. He had a 1st in Surf League, 1st in the U16 Surf Race at Surf Lifesaving Nationals, NZ U16 Trans Tasman Series most valuable player, member of NZ U16, NZ U18 youth men's and NZ School Boys waterpolo teams. Cameron lists a short term goal for his team of placing in the top 6 at the Junior World champs in December this year.

Daniel Bridgwater (Pyes Pa) - Rowing

Daniel, a Tauranga Boys' College student has an impressive list of achievements this year which include 1st in the U19 double NICC/NZCC, Club 4x - NICC, U17 double NISS/NZSS, U18 LWT NISS/NZSS (double skulls) and U18 LW four NISS (2nd place NZSS). Daniel's scholarship will help him with costs of competing in the Australian Youth Olympic Festival in January, where his goal is to win all his races.

Karina Radley (Otumoetai) - Surf Lifesaving/Kayaking

This year has seen Karina compete in many events with excellent results. Her latest results include being a finalist at the Australian National Surf Lifesaving championships in the U19 women's ski, open women's ski relay and open women's double ski race. Karina has been selected in the U23 Canoe Sprint High Performance Programme and Pathway Squad. The next goal on Karina's list is to make the finals at the World's event in August next year.

Makayla Daysh (Ohauiti) - Basketball

Makayla has represented Tauranga Girls' College, the Bay of Plenty and New Zealand in Basketball. In September this year Makayla's team, the NZU19 Junior Tall Ferns, placed 2nd at the U19 Oceania Champs. Makayla hopes to be selected in the NZ National Basketball team who will compete at the Australian State Champs in Tasmania in January. Makayla has been selected in the NZ U18 Women's basketball team and the All Star 5 tournament team.

Marshall Gibson (Te Puna) - Wrestling

This year Marshall has won seven gold medals in the 120kg category. The first was in July at the Wrestling NZ Down Under Championships, then at Wrestling Nationals, USA Ironman and four gold medals at NZ Wrestling Nationals in September. Next year Marshall's goals include gold in the junior 120kg class at the Oceania Championships and gold in the 120kg at the Junior Worlds. This electrical engineering student is well on his way to achieving his goals.

Sam O'Dea (Otumoetai) - Beach Volleyball

Sam was named Best Blocker both this year and last in the New Zealand national tour, and this year best attacker also. On tour this year Sam's team, NZ National Beach volleyball team placed 2nd overall. A couple of highlights from Sam's achievements this year include; 1st in the Thailand National Championships Invitational and 1st in the Asian Beach event in Indonesia. Sam plans to compete in the World Tour in April next year and hopes to play in all events and qualify for the World Championships.

Sam Shergold (Bethlehem) - Surf Lifesaving

Sam has been selected in the New Zealand U20 Surf Lifesaving team to go to the U20 World Champs this month. His national achievements this year include 1st in the U19 ski relay, 2nd in the U19 taplin relay, 3rd in the U19 ski race and 3rd place open men's board relay. At the Australia champs, Sam placed 7th in the U19 board race. Sam's hopes to become a world champion this month at the U20 World champs. Sam is currently studying Business Management at the Bay of Plenty Polytechnic.

Sam Smith (Mount Maunganui) - Basketball

This Mount Maunganui College student has been a member of four basketball teams this year; captain of the Tauranga City U17 Men's team, member of the Tauranga City Men's team who came 1st at the Regionals in August, captain of Mount Maunganui College Senior A Boys team and member of the New Zealand Koru U18 Men's Development team. Sam has a list of goals, one of which is being selected in the New Zealand U18 Men's team for 2013.

Sheldon Noyce (Tauranga South) - Rowing

Sheldon was a member of the Youth Olympics U20 New Zealand team who placed 1st in the men's single and was a member of the New Zealand U18 team who placed 2nd in U18 fours and pairs. Sheldon also competes for Tauranga Boys' College who won the Aon Maadi Cup in March and placed 1st in U17 fours at the Aon NISSC. Sheldon has a goal of competing at the Youth Olympics in January next year, placing 1st in all events.

Simone Couvee (Mount Maunganui) - Water Polo

Simone's team, New Zealand Junior Women, won 4 out of 6 games this year at the Australian State champs, lost one game and drew one game at the Australia NZ test series in April. Simone is the captain of both the NZ Youth team and BOP U18 team. Simone's goal for next year is to make the Worlds' team and go to Greece. In the future Simone would like to qualify for the New Zealand Women's team and compete at the Olympic Games in Brazil.

BayTrust Coach Scholarships

Basketball Bay of Plenty (BOP) - Basketball

Basketball Bay of Plenty plan to have more and better educated coaches coaching basketball in the Bay of Plenty and to help Bay of Plenty coaches reach the level required to coach in the New Zealand development and age group performance programmes. Their scholarship will allow High Performance NZ coaches to hold a performance coaching workshop in the Bay of Plenty.

Duncan By De Ley (Katikati) - Rowing

Duncan has coached competitive crews since 2002 and is continually striving to improve his coaching skills. In 2012 he plans to rebuild Tauranga Rowing Club to be competitive at NZ Nationals and for 2013 Duncan would like to seek selection to again coach a NZ Junior crew/s. His long term goal for 2014-16 is to seek selection to coach a NZ U23 crew. Duncan says that by being disciplined, committed and dedicated, goals at the highest level are very achievable.

Jay Carter (Pyes Pa) - Golf

Jay plans to go to Melbourne to spend time with Ryan Lumsden, a world leader in the golf biomechanics field, to allow him to bring world class practices back to not only New Zealand golf but also Bay of Plenty Golf. Jay has goals of producing a world number one player through the Golf Fusion Academy, winning the Interprovincial title with BOP in Otago and developing a more holistic approach to the coaching model that is used by both BOP and NZ Golf for player development.

Melanie Bennett (Tauranga South) - Basketball

Melanie has recently been appointed head coach for the final Koru Tour, travelling to Australia in January. She is a current Basketball NZ coach with the goal of developing players in the region so they are confident enough to believe that they can perform at this level and attend clusters camps. Melanie is also the apprentice coach to the NZ Tall Ferns, assistant coach to Oceania Gold Rush, director of basketball at Tauranga Girls' College and head coach of Tauranga City Basketball U17 girls' programme.

Michael Rodriguez (Tauranga South) - Basketball

Michael is currently the Aquinas College Men's programme head coach and the BOP U13 Boys assistant coach for the navigator development programme. Michael has also been appointed as one of the coaches for the New Zealand development tour in January which will be very valuable for Tauranga athletes on his return. Through the New Zealand Women's programme, Michael will also be helping to develop some of our future Tall Fern players.

Bay of Plenty Bowls (BOP) - Lawn Bowls

BOP bowls are looking to take the game to the youth of the region. They are training youth elite players to become coaches so that the young men can show youngsters of their own age how to play the sport by relating to each other. The funding will pay for the training courses and equipment required to run the programme.

Todd Blythe (Maungatapu) - Track and Field

Although a former high performance athlete, he is relatively new to coaching. Todd is keen to improve his overall knowledge as a coach. Currently he provides assistance to various rugby coaches with their sprint training and is coach to two of the top sprinters in New Zealand. Todd believes there is a lack of quality sprint coaches and wishes to increase the knowledge and capability of local coaches to ensure our regional athletes have the best chance to succeed in their given sport. Todd has goals of two athletes going to the World Champs next year and two athletes competing in the World Junior championships in 2014.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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