Girls game powers up

RELATED COVERAGE Gippsland girls make history

DUAL AFL Gippsland female coach of the year Nikki Schroeter will lead the first ever Gippsland Power girls youth team into battle at next year’s V/Line Cup carnival.

Headhunted by Power scouts Peter Francis and Rob Reid for her perennial coaching success at Lavalla Catholic College over the past 12 years, Schroeter comes well credentialed.

The mother of three took Lavalla to the top of the state this year, winning the School Sports Victoria State Championship, and was runner up in the 2010 AFL female state coach of the year standings.

Schroeter, who has been sports co-coordinator at the school for 14 years, said she was excited by the prospect of coaching an elite team.

“With the coaching at Lavalla I have a very different variety of players, where I think we’re going to have no weak players at all throughout the whole Power team,” she said.

“Just the difference in the quality of football we’ll be having compared to school football… (it’s) definitely exciting.

“I think this opportunity for the girls is amazing. If we had this back in my day I’d be trying out – they don’t normally get this level of football.”

The level one accredited coach was formally introduced at Gippsland Power’s player/parent information day at the weekend, where she addressed 40 keen female footballers.

With the squad to be cut down to 25 prior to next year’s carnival, Schroeter said selection would come down to those who best applied themselves to the training regime.

The girls will follow a fitness guide in their own time before congregating at Power headquarters for skills training before Christmas.

“My goal is to try and get the best quality football out of every player,” Schroeter said.

“If I can help every player with something that they’re striving for by the carnival that would be fantastic.”

Schroeter is a finalist for this year’s state female coach of the year award which will be announced tomorrow.