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The BluePrint Online

The student news site of Hagerty High School

The BluePrint Online

The student news site of Hagerty High School

The BluePrint Online

What’s your thing: Chris Hale

Chris+Hale+competes+in+a+match+during+the+16U+division.+Hale+started+learning+hockey+when+he+was+seven-years-old%2C+joining+the+CFHC+when+he+was+twelve%2C+and+playing+with+the+team+since.
photo by Chris Hale
Chris Hale competes in a match during the 16U division. Hale started learning hockey when he was seven-years-old, joining the CFHC when he was twelve, and playing with the team since.

Sitting on the couch, watching the Toronto Maple Leafs with his mom, junior Chris Hale fell in love with hockey. After years of watching the sport from the sidelines, Hale decided to start lessons at Orlando Ice Den, an ice rink 40 minutes away. While the drives were long, Hale always anticipated the moment he stepped on the rink.

“Skating on the ice is an experience like no other— it makes me feel free and takes away my stress,” Hale said,

Honestly, once you get the skating down it then becomes pretty easy. Stickhandling is another thing, I’ve played for a long time now and I’m still not the best, but spending more and more time practicing shows you the difference.

— Chris Hale, 11

At first, he only played in the house league, a recreational division that was focused on fun and skill development. After mastering the basics, he decided to go into an advanced league where he bonded with his team and learned game strategy. When he turned 12, he joined the Central Florida Hockey Club, a 14U division where he learned different line-ups, strategies and teamwork. Hale and his team have won around 15 tournaments from his years during the 14U division through 16U. During his last season in the 16U division, Hale’s team was struggling to dominate in their games. After a devastating loss at the beginning of their season, his team came back refreshed for their championship.

“During the season we were able to work on defense and turnovers, we worked hard, gave it our all, and went home with a win that we wanted,” Hale said.

While skating comes naturally to hockey players who live with ice and snow, as a Floridian, Hale first had to learn how to skate. After a year he was able to move swiftly through the ice rink. Then, he started learning how to pass and control the puck as well as how to handle the stick, something he still wishes to improve on.

“Honestly, once you get the skating down it then becomes pretty easy. Stickhandling is another thing. I’ve played for a long time now and I’m still not the best, but spending more and more time practicing shows you the difference,” Hale said,

Hale is still playing with CFHC Bears but has moved to the 18U division. Since joining the team, he has gone to practice three times a week While his passion for hockey continues to grow, he sometimes struggles with juggling hockey and school.

“The drives are long and it’s definitely a commitment. I’ve had to study and do homework during the drives or when I have time in the rink to keep up with school work,” Hale said.

Distance for Hale is not the only problem. In order to play competitive hockey, Hale’s family pays around $5,000 for equipment, gas, and team fees.

 Still, Hale has a love for the game and wishes to continue playing for as long as he can.

“I love hockey and everything about it, it is a beautiful and underrated game,” Hale said.

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About the Contributor
Greta Carrasco, Online Editor
Greta Carrasco is a junior at Hagerty High School, and this is her third year on staff. She was born in Mexico and is fluent in both English and Spanish. Her favorite types of stories are opinions, and she enjoys writing about topics she's passionate about.
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