Kim McCullough

The perfect shot


By Kim McCullough, M.Sc, YCS

It happens in every girls’ hockey game I watch. A player gets the puck in the slot with a clear lane to the net, and they end up passing it to a player in a worse scoring position or they take too long to make a decision and turn over the puck. Girls’ hockey players are guilty of waiting for the perfect shot. Instead of getting pucks and bodies to net, and finding ways to score ‘greasy’ goals, they squander great scoring chances. I’m sure you’ve seen it before, too.

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The give and take of girls’ hockey


By Kim McCullough, M.Sc, YCS

Puck possession is an interesting stat to track in girls’ hockey. While it’s nice to see your team have the puck more often than the bad guys, I’m sure you’ve seen many instances where one team dominates the other in terms of time with the puck and the team with less time of possession wins. A more critical stat to look at is your giveaway-to-takeaway ratio.

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Are faceoffs even important?


By Kim McCullough, M.Sc, YCS

I have to admit that faceoff plays are definitely not something I get excited about as a coach. Teaching them usually involves a lot of standing around and it’s hard to run through them at game-like intensity with your own team since everyone knows the same plays. All that being said, they are absolutely critical to the success of any team, so we spend a good amount of time working on them. Faceoff plays aren’t as fun and exciting as playing 5-on-5. They don’t get the same glory as the power play. But they are a very necessary evil.

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Is the grass really greener?


By Kim McCullough, M.Sc, YCS

I had a great chat last week with a former player of mine who is playing NCAA Division I hockey at a school that fits her perfectly both academically and socially. She worked extremely hard on and off the ice to realize that dream, and I am honored to have been able to help her through the process. She loves her teammates, her studies and everything to do with the school. 

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Watch and learn


By Kim McCullough, M.Sc, YCS

Video is a fantastic teaching and learning tool for young hockey players. Just think of how often in a given day players are watching videos on their phones or online. As parents and coaches, this technology simply wasn’t available to us growing up, so we might not be as attuned to it as our kids are. Most young people are visual learners, so we need to teach them in a way that they’ll best absorb the information.

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