Moe fourths coach Lachlan Sim has been awarded Gippsland football’s highest coaching honour at last week’s AFL Gippsland Coaches and Community Awards dinner.
Sim was named Coach of the Year by the Gippsland branch of the Australian Football Coaches Association at the second annual presentation night.
The former Brisbane Bears footballer has spent the last five years of his Gippsland football coaching career at the helm of Moe’s under-16 team, which he led to a fourth straight grand final and third premiership in four years in 2017.
In addition to the on-field success, Sim was lauded for his ability to develop players – in terms of skill and game knowledge – and encourage their transition to senior football and continued participation in the sport by ensuring all were provided with an enjoyable experience, regardless of their ability.
Moe senior coach James Blaser was named Senior Coach of the Year.
In his second season in the role, Blaser worked hard to develop and give opportunities to players within the club, guiding the Lions to 12 wins and returning them to finals for the first time since 2009.
Sale’s Scott Pearce picked up the Junior Coach of the Year Award, inaugural Bass Coast Breakers coach Steve Kenny was Female Team Coach of the Year and Morwell Auskick Centre’s Kenny McKay was Auskick Coach of the Year.
League Coach of the Year awards were awarded to Sim [Gippsland League], Rosedale under-18 coach Adam Diamond [North Gippsland FNL], Toora senior coach Jack Weston [Alberton FNL], Wy Yung under-16 coach Brodie Anderson [East Gippsland FNL], Bruthen senior coach Ben Murphy [Omeo and District FNL], Yallourn/Yallourn North senior coach Adam Bailey, Warragul Industrials under-18 coach Robert Hefford [Ellinbank and District FL] and Inverloch-Kongwak senior coach Ben Soumilas [Alex Scott and Staff West Gippsland FNC].
Phillip Island Auskick Centre’s Melissa Cashman claimed the Auskick Coordinator of the Year Award.
Sale Umpires Association boundary umpire Tim Beattie claimed the Umpire of the Year Award, while Rosedale’s Alanna Diamond and Hill End/Grove Rovers’ Tim Mackenlay were joint Volunteers of the Year.
Diamond was recognised for her significant contribution behind the scenes, from managing the club’s events and fundraisers to cleaning the rooms and submitting match day paperwork, while Mackenlay was acknowledged for his work primarily as a trainer for football and netball teams, but also his work preparing and maintaining the ground and arranging installing a new electronic scoreboard.