The student news site of Bellarmine Preparatory School

The Bellarmine Prep Lion

The student news site of Bellarmine Preparatory School

The Bellarmine Prep Lion

The student news site of Bellarmine Preparatory School

The Bellarmine Prep Lion

Students share their personal journeys on the icy stage

Nathan+Wilson+plays+goalie+for+his+hockey+team.+Photo+courtesy+of+Nathan+Wilson
Nathan Wilson plays goalie for his hockey team. Photo courtesy of Nathan Wilson

Bellarmine Students Share Their Personal Journeys on the Icy Stage

As winter’s chill envelopes the world, the realms of figure skating and hockey come alive with captivating tales of passion and triumph. In a unique exploration, we dive into the personal narratives of Bellarmine students who, with each glide and puck-handling finesse, unveil the enchanting worlds of figure skating and hockey.

Addie Weber, a sophomore at Bellarmine, traces her figure skating journey back to the frosty landscapes of Minnesota. “I used to live in Minnesota… it was a really common thing in the winter for people to go skating or start hockey… so I initially wanted to do hockey when I was like 2 or 3 and then I had to take skating lessons and that’s just kind of where it started.”

For Weber, figure skating is more than an art; it’s a vessel for life skills. “I feel like there is a lot of life skills that you take out of skating. I think not just falling down and getting up but like the thought process that goes behind technique, programs, and really just everything.”

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Weber’s routine during the school year involves frequent trips to the rink. “During the school year I typically go about 3-4 times a week on weekdays. Usually that consists of going straight after school to the rink which is about a 30-minute drive and then usually I will change, warm up briefly, get my skates on and then 2 hours of on-ice practice.”

Recently achieving her gold medal, Weber reflects on the accomplishment. “I recently this year got my gold medal which is basically this thing where you work towards these tests that you take, and I started taking these tests when I was 7 or 8 so it was always something that I saw in my future.”

Tristan O’Neal, another Bellarmine sophomore, found his way to hockey after watching the Mighty Ducks in 3rd grade. “I watched the Mighty Ducks in 3rd grade, and I wasn’t really liking soccer at the time, so I asked my parents if I could play hockey, and ever since it has been my favorite sport.”

O’Neal emphasizes the physical demands of hockey. “We do some dry land like running and stuff. We have a gym too that we use every now and then when it is available to us. We practice at twins; we come to Sprinker every now and then.”

O’Neal notes, “You can’t be scared of getting hit. That is one of the hardest things to do—freezing up before a hit or getting rid of the puck too soon; you gotta be tough and ready to receive a hit if it means making the play.”

O’Neal cherishes all the memorable experiences he has had on the ice. “Probably in 12U, we won the championship, which was pretty fun. Or we will play a team that’s like the best and we have never beaten them before and then we will finally beat them, things like that.”

Johnny Dickie, a junior at Bellarmine, shares how he delved into hockey. “I got into it in 2015 when I started watching the playoffs for hockey, and my dad also grew up playing so it just created a drive for me to get better and play hockey one day and to get to the highest level I could possibly get to.”

Dickie underscores the importance of physical conditioning. “I work out 5-7 days a week with body weight material or also do sprints and stick handling at home with a net.”

Discussing team dynamics, Dickie says, “Off the ice, it’s a lot of kinship and a lot of camaraderie friendship-wise, and we watch a lot of film together.”

Dickie, being a smaller player, discusses the mental challenges. “For me as a smaller player, it’s a little harder because it reduces a bit of confidence, but it also helps me push myself mentally and also helps other players who have different height and weight levels than me.”

Matthew Taylor, a junior with eight years in hockey, reminisces his introduction to the sport, “My mom used to figure skate, and she would always take me to figure skating lessons, and I saw the hockey players, and I said I wanna do that.”

Discussing teamwork, Taylor emphasizes a positive attitude. “You have to have a really good attitude towards your teammates because if you have a bad attitude, then your communication is gonna be off.”

Junior, Nathan Wilson, playing hockey since age 11, narrates his entry into hockey. “Originally my dad introduced it to me. I just started watching a couple of years ago before (I started playing) and I knew that I wanted to do a sport because I was just trying out different sports like lacrosse and other things like that.”

Reflecting on the mental challenges, Wilson states, “Staying focused is probably one of the hardest things when in a game. Way harder than the physical aspects.”

As winter wraps its icy tendrils around the world, the stage is set for a visual masterpiece—an ode to the timeless allure of figure skating and the thrilling symphony of hockey. Each athlete’s journey, adorned with unique challenges and triumphant moments, contributes to the grand visual spectacle of winter sports. In their graceful glides and powerful puck-handling, we witness a visual masterpiece—an enchanting tapestry woven with threads of athleticism and artistry. The echoes of their stories resonate, creating a captivating symphony forever etched in the winter tales of Bellarmine’s figure skaters and hockey players.

About the Contributor
Gabriella Gade, Reporter

Gabriella Gade is a senior this year who is super excited to be on this ‘23-‘24 Journalism Staff!  At Bellarmine she is involved in cheerleading, Lion Outreach, APICA, FASA, and many more. Outside of school, she trains full time as a competitive figure skater and works at the ice rink.