The founder of and Technical Director for the Ocean Atlantic Field Hockey Association is Cris Maloney. Cris is the author of the online umpiring course being taken by new and experienced umpires across the nation (you can sign up by clicking here) and the author of FIELD HOCKEY: UNDERSTANDING THE GAME (available separately on Amazon.com for $14.99 plus shipping) and JUMP IN: BEGINNER’S GUIDE FIELD HOCKEY UMPIRING (available online for free by clicking here). He developed a unique approach to teaching new players individual skills (holding the stick, dribbling, passing, receiving, etc.) that gets them started with immediate success.
Cris started playing field hockey in 1975. He eventually played at the national level though he fell short of making the USA national men’s team that played in the 1984 Olympics. He was the assistant coach on teams that won gold medals at two US Olympic Festivals, and has been helping USA Field Hockey’s officiating program for nearly two decades.
Cris is the creator and editor of USA Field Hockey’s “Ask the Umpire” feature found on USAFieldHockey.com, publisher of UmpireHockey.com, is an active umpire coach, and teaches JUMP IN and Level II umpire courses in central New Jersey. Cris moved the courses online after students from as far away as Maryland and Ohio traveled to NJ to matriculate in the Level II course he taught. He retired from competitive umpiring when he turned 55 but can, from time to time, be found umpiring intercollegiate scrimmages and club games. He does play-by-play and color announcing at many field hockey competitions — including international, national, and college tournaments. He is the announcer on the webcasts for Princeton University’s home games.
In 1985 Cris was asked to present at an Olympic Solidarity Seminar for coaches, an International Olympic Committee program. He presented “Field Hockey: The First 30 Minutes”, which highlighted the techniques he uses to teach beginners how to start playing field hockey — their first 30 minutes. His techniques have been dubbed the Maloney Method, which he uses in his teaching responsibilities for OAFHA and will, he promises, be the corner stone of his third field hockey book.
During his decades involved with the sport, Cris has also been a field hockey developer. For example, he founded the Garden State Games Field Hockey Event in 1983. The GSGFH Event was the first, and for many years the longest running, annual field hockey tournament in the USA to be played entirely on an artificial surface, a.k.a. turf. In the mid-80’s, the GSGFH Event was the only venue that gave girls the opportunity to play on turf in games governed by the Rules of Hockey (FIH). The 1983 GSGFH Event, and for many years thereafter, also featured a men’s only division. All-star teams of players came from up and down the east coast to participate.
An evangelist for increasing the number of opportunities for boys to play field hockey, in the Spring of 2011 Cris decided to start a field hockey program for boys, which was part of a 2011 development initiative supported by USA Field Hockey. Boys as young as 8 years old and as “old” as 18 joined the program. Three of the boys were selected to the east coast high performance program for junior boys. Two of those boys went on to be selected to compete in the National Junior Men’s Championships where they won the gold medal! Most recently he created a version of field hockey designed to limit the sport’s complexities so teenage boys to learn the game in an afternoon and hold competitions that evening. This was largely accomplished by replacing the penalty corner with the fun titled STONKER (click here to learn more and watch a Stonker demonstration). Cris dubbed the sport Juggernaut Field Hockey and suggests that it be played in schools as a fundraiser for the Prostate Cancer Foundation (pcf.org). This would be similar to how many “Powder Puff Football” games are played by girls to raise money to support breast cancer research while playing in a counter-cultural version of football.
Always an entrepreneur, Cris was motivated to help design the “Pitch-Perfect” all-aluminum side-board by the difficulties athletes and umpires were forced to endure with twisted and warped wooden boards during indoor hockey games. Cris sells these boards and other facility-level equipment on (BolsterSports.com). His hockey umpiring experience and frustration finding suitable recording material to use in all kinds of game conditions, led him to create an umpiring tool called MatchSKINS — an all-weather “write when wet”, erasable, and reusable “lay-on and peel-off” material designed for umpires to record detailed game events on their yellow cards (MatchSKINS.com). And, if all that isn’t enough, he’s is expanding the Juggernaut Field Hockey brand to include a line of sticks to raise funds for OAFHA while supplying top quality sticks priced to lower the sport’s otherwise expensive barrier to entry for cost conscious schools and consumers.
Outside of field hockey, Cris is a father of four and grandfather of one. He and his wife live in Hopewell Township. He is an executive with Sutherland Global Services where he is responsible for technology supporting CloudSource, a Sutherland business featuring consultants who work from home providing services for many of Sutherland’s clients. Prior to joining Sutherland, Cris served as the Chief Technology Officer for Callaway Henderson Sotheby’s International Realty, the leading real estate firm in central New Jersey. At CHSIR, Cris drove the firm’s migration from a disparate collection of on-premise services to a suite of cloud-based solutions. Before his move to the real estate industry in 2001, Cris was the Senior Vice President of Technology and Marketing for Peterson’s, an education market publisher where, from 1995 until 2001, he directed the company’s transition from a book-only publisher to a multi-media company with offerings in print, software, and on the web. Working with Dow Jones & Company, publisher of The Wall Street Journal, from 1991 until 1995, Cris was in the Advanced Technologies Group and served as the project manager responsible for launching the company’s first commercial web service in 1994.