The VIATEK Central Coast Academy of Sport Awards Evening was held on Wednesday 20th November at Mingara Recreation Club. In a room full of influential guests, athletes, parents and supporters the CCAS announced the major award winners for 2019.
The awards evening was the second stage of the restructured awards presentation. Every sporting program athletes of the year winners and encouragement award winners (who were announced at a previous event titled the Athlete Celebration), were all in the running to be announced as the overall Central Coast Academy of Sport Male or Female Athlete of the Year.
The CCAS is proud to announce the following winners:
|Male Athlete of the Year:||Marcus James (Hockey)|
|Female Athlete of the Year:||Holly Handley (Basketball)|
|Chairman’s Award:||Ronan Grattan (Basketball)|
|The Ray Sandell Dedication to Sporting Excellence:||Matt Cranney / Brett Doring|
|The Office of Sport Coaching Scholarship:||Jessica Morgan (Netball)|
Office of Sport Coaching Scholarship
(Incorporating the Volunteer of the Year Award) Supported by – Greater Bank – Jess Morgan
Jess Morgan is the current Head Coach of the Netball program, her position as the Head Coach means she oversees all coaching across the CCAS Netball program. The Greater Bank Netball program has three (3) coaches involved and twenty six (26) athletes who are all led by Jess.
Jess was chosen as a suitable coach for the OOS Scholarship based on her dedication to her coaching, her willingness to study the game and her quest for information to make her a more effective coach. As a qualified PDHPE teacher the link between teaching and coaching has placed Jess in advantageous position, her coaching is based on her knowledge of the importance of building superior fundamental skills, these then allow game strategies and technical considerations to follow.
As a former CCAS athlete Jess has been an asset to the CCAS Netball Coaching roster. Looking ahead to 2020 Jess will continue is her role as CCAS Head Coach (netball) and has also been appointed Assistant Coach, Emerging Talent Squad, Netball NSW.
Ray Sandell Dedication to Sporting Excellence – Matt Cranney and Brett Doring
Matt Cranney is a sports professional providing our region significant advantage through his work at Coast Sport, an organisation heavily invested in the support of up and coming athletes from our region. Matt is one of the highest qualified professionals in his field with qualifications in the following fields; a Bachelor of Applied Science, a Master of Physiotherapy, Master of Musculoskeletal and Sports Physiotherapy and an Accredited Exercise Physiologist…..he has so many ‘strings to his bow’ in the field of Exercise and Sports Science and it is simply remarkable how he find the time to apply his generous support to the CCAS and the many athletes under his care.
Brett Doring is a keen surfer, a retired swimmer and a retired triathlete, disciplines that he is now heavily involved with through the CCAS. Brett regularly works with state and national swimming teams and regularly tours with the Australian Swim Team and the Australian Paralympic Team. Like Matt Cranney his CV is loaded with higher education qualifications….. a Degree in Exercise and Sports Science, a Master of Physiotherapy, a Master of Sports Physiotherapy as a Director of Coast Sport he is fully invested in helping our up and coming athletes, I have no doubt that the recent success of the Central Coast Heart can be traced back to the untiring support this organisation received via Coast Sport. The CCAS is extremely fortunate to have the support of both Matt and Brett and both are recipients of the Ray Sandell Dedication to Sporting Excellence Award.
CCAS Chairman’s Award – Ronan Grattan
Ronan encompasses what the Central Coast Academy of Sport is all about. In his chosen discipline of Basketball Ronan has made an exceptional contribution to the good name and position of the CCAS. His determination, gritt and expectation that he puts on himself and his teammates performances is second to none. Ronan always looks out for his teammates not only on the court but also the wellbeing of others off the court. His entry to the basketball program was based on an exceptional circumstances request and the results he has achieved have been outstanding
Ronan has had a fantastic Academy ‘career’, he led the boys squad to an outstanding result at the 2019 ClubsNSW Academy Games, his maturity and leadership to the squad was simply outstanding, he is a true credit to our region and an extremely worthy winner of the Chairman’s award.
CCAS Male Athlete of the Year – Marcus James
Marcus was selected in the CCHA Under 18 Rep team which competed at the State Championships in Grafton. The team finished 5th overall in Division 1 Marcus also plays locally for the Erina Hockey club in their Open Men’s Div 1 team, helping them win the Minor Premiership this season for the first time in 5 years. He also played for ‘Newcastle University’ in the Hunter Coast Premier League competition in 2019.
Marcus was selected at this year’s recipient due to his excellent work ethic at training and also his leadership shown during the Academy Games tournament. Marcus was one of the senior members of this years squad and really lived by the Team Culture – Responsibility, work ethic, commitment and respect. Marcus would often set the tone of the session if other members were stepping outside the agreed boundaries. He would also drive the training to ensure that it was always at the standards that the coaches expected. Marcus was unanimously voted as the athlete of the year by all the hockey coaches.
CCAS Female Athlete of the Year- Holly Handley
Holly is a great competitor, tough and resilient are qualities that Holly possess’ and showed throughout the entire academy season. Holly is a well deserving recipient of this award. Holly demonstrates a never say die attitude and a willingness to get better, as an emerging athlete she possibly hasn’t hit the high marks that some others may possess, however, the qualities she displays will no doubt guarantee her ongoing success as she continues to develop her game skills, this combined with her outstanding athletic ability will set her up well for future success. Holly has been an excellent role model for the younger athletes and has always set a high standard for others to follow. Holly has also returned to the basketball program as a volunteer coach.
Life Members: For the first time in the organisations sixteen year history the first ‘induction’ of Life Membership was announced during the awards evening, congratulations to the following inductee’s:
Mark Holton – Mark is the founding chairman of the CCAS, since our formation Mark has provided incredible support through his astute leadership, his knowledge of the financial drivers of a business, his work with ‘Optimist’ a software package that would project a business’s financial success into the future was instrumental in passing the CCAS business case through Treasury in 2003 are all attributable to Mark Holton. Mark is a career Not-For-Profit Director. The CCAS is not just fortunate to have his untiring support and leadership but he is a close friend, a person who quietly does so much to contribute to the organisations success, one could not think of a better Chairman, Mark is fully engaged with the other Directors, a true gentleman, an astute business executive and a person who has provided 15 years of continual support to the organisation. Life Member #1 – Mark Holton.
Mike Rabbitt OAM – When the business was just an idea Mike Rabbitt was a person targeted to provide his knowledge of sport and media as a key Founding Director. Mikes involvement is not just in the media, he has been fully invested in the commercial acquisition program, as an event emcee multiple times, as a public advocate of the organisation, an expert in the media and public relations space, his involvement has been staggering since day one. The very first commercial contract signed was with NBN Television in November 2003, we suspect our 15+ years partnership with NBN was established on the work of Mike Rabbitt and the respect he holds in the industry. Mike was the face of NBN Television for close to 30 years, in that time he gained incredible respect as a popular and talented sports presenter and a likeable ‘larrikin’. With any new business the ability to establish a ‘brand’ is paramount to an organisations success, the CCAS has been extremely fortunate to have Mike driving the media, PR strategy and digital engagement. In 2013, Mike was deservedly awarded an Order of Australian Medal (OAM) in recognition of his outstanding service to the community. Life Member #2 – Mike Rabbitt OAM.
Steve McWhirter – Steve was targeted to join the CCAS as a Founding Director due to his impressive career in the Information Technology sector. The CCAS was extremely mindful in the early years of establishing a robust, state of the art IT system that would lead the way in terms of innovation. Steve was the perfect fit to help establish and then maintain this strategy, as a senior executive with IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Salesforce and Check Point Security the CCAS could not find a better person to lead the Information Technology set up for the organisation. To site one example the CCAS utilises Salesforce as the organisations CRM, Steve secured this software at no charge to the business, a significant annual saving, more recently Check Point Security was installed to keep the IT system more than current and very secure. As a high level rugby union player and a keen advocate of supporting our youth Steve has been a director since day 1, Steve has provided outstanding support often when travelling throughout Asia. Steve would always find time to support the CCAS, our athletes, coaches and key industry stakeholders. Life Member #3 – Steve McWhirter.