TO keep Sue Musgrave and Kerry Bryant from finding out they were to become life members of Coffs Harbour District Hockey Association, their mothers were enlisted as part of the plot.
Each knew the other was to be honoured but neither could work out the exact reason why their mum's were still hovering around the scene.
"My suspicions were aroused when mum stayed for the grand final presentation," Kerry said.
"We had visitors from the South Coast and she should have been going home with them, but when my name was announced, she came up and told me all about the secret planning."
Sue was just as much in the dark when her mother stayed on and was still in shock at the care taken with confidentiality.
"It's a wonderful honour," she said, "and nice to find the hard work is appreciated."
Both women have a track record of service stretching back more than a decade.
A player since the age of 11, Kerry excelled at representative and veteran's hockey before finding her niche managing the association finances.
"Managing teams is a joy and so is working with the umpires," she said.
"The treasurer's position also keeps me flat out as there are many things to be done."
Sue Musgrave has just about done it all in the hockey world.
Coaching, managing the rep teams, organising volunteers and the canteen have all been highlights.
But it's the handling of 'leftovers' that brings most satisfaction.
"We took the spare parts from the Orara and Northern Beaches teams and turned them into a winning unit," she said proudly.
"It's wonderful how far they've come."
Both Sue and Kerry remarked how proud they were to be involved in hockey.
Apparently, their mother's are just as proud of them to have kept a secret so long.
Mum's the word.