Region 11 Administrative Manager: Madison Gilbert
Madison Gilbert brings a wealth of coaching experience from Colorado, Oklahoma and Texas to her new role as Nexus Regional Manager in Region 11. Before her move to the Bay Area, she spent three successful years as the head coach at Casady School in Oklahoma City, where she led her team to a conference championship and played a pivotal role in fundraising for the state's first water-based turf. Prior to her time in Oklahoma City, Madison also coached for two seasons at Holland Hall in Tulsa, Okla.
In addition to her coaching roles in Oklahoma, Madison worked for Harrow Sports in Denver, Colo., and coached at Colorado Academy. Madison is eager to reconnect with coaches and players in Region 11 and contribute to the continued growth of the sport on the West Coast.
Region 11 Coach Manager: Michelle Van de Braak
Michelle Smulders - Van de Braak started coaching with USA Field Hockey in 2021 as an AAU Junior Olympic Games coach. She is a former All American from the University of Michigan, U.S. U-21 and U-23 Women's National Team athlete, Junior Olympian and attended the U.S. Olympic Trials with hopes of making the USWNT for the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. She participated in the early years of the Futures as an athlete and currently is a USA Field Hockey Level II Accredited coach.
Michelle resides in San Francisco, Calif, where she owns and operates the San Francisco Youth Field Hockey Club and is varsity coach at San Francisco University High School.
Region 11: West is unique in many ways as it is made up of 13 states including Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming. California and Colorado are currently the only states in Region 11 where field hockey is well established with youth, middle school, high school, college, adult and club programs for boys and girls of all ages. USA Field Hockey hopes to change that and encourage all interested in growing the game through Region 11 to contact firstname.lastname@example.org for support.
Some fun facts: California is home to more USA Field Hockey Lifetime Members and male members than any other state. It's also home to Moorpark College, a men's field hockey mecca in the United States and where the California Cup, one of the longest-running international tournaments in the world, continues to be held each Memorial Day weekend.
California is an important state of field hockey for many reasons. In 2028, Los Angeles will once again host the Summer Olympic Games, the site where the U.S. Men's National Team won bronze in 1932 and U.S. Women's National Team won bronze in their first Olympic Games in 1984. Today's Nexus participants could be the next U.S. Olympic field hockey athletes!
USA Field Hockey is working with leaders in California and Region 11 to grow the game in advance and as a legacy of the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games. In 2020, USA Field Hockey launched the California State Chapter, a pilot program of regional representation established to Grow the Game, Serve Members and Succeed Internationally. For more information about the California State Chapter, email email@example.com.
Please use the administrative manager as the main point of contact for questions around schedules, registration and other administrative needs. All questions from and around coaching Nexus or on field content should be directed to the coach manager.