How It All Began

So, I haven’t liked hockey for the longest time. But I know that ever since I started watching hockey, that I would love this sport. It all started when I entered high school. (Back Story: I went to my town elementary school, and then for middle school I went to a magnet school (people from all over your county get accepted), then when I finished middle school, I went back to my town high school).

When I went back to my town high school, I didn’t have any friends because all of my friends that I made at my magnet school went to all different high schools. So, I thought that sports could help me make some friends (now it’s funny, because a good majority of all of my friends now don’t like hockey). When I was in 8th grade, one of my friends kind-of introduced me to hockey, but the only thing she taught me was what a hat trick is! Funny thing is, she was a Flyers fan (how ironic). Once, she taught me that, I thought I’d be pretty bored with it so I didn’t really pay any attention to it. But then, I changed my mind as soon as I walked into my school freshmen year. Hockey is one of the bigger sports in my town, so I figured getting to know a little bit about it couldn’t hurt.

Then, I said to my dad one day “teach me about hockey”. So first, he told me what team I was going to like, and that ended up being the Penguins. He has liked them ever since he was a kid, so I trusted his choice. I didn’t actually have a choice, he would never let me like a different team then him. Then, I would watch games. And, the first game I ever watched was: Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Philadelphia Flyers on April 1, 2015 and the Pens lost 4-1. So it wasn’t the best first game, but who cares. Then I faithfully watched every game. I did not watch many with my dad, but he would explain to me what happened after each game to help me understand. 

I remember when the Pens barely made the playoffs, and then we lost in the first round against the Rangers in Game 5. When I went to school the next day, all of the Rangers fans were mocking me (I live in Connecticut, so everyone here likes the Rangers or Bruins). But, I got through it. Then, the school year ended and summer was here, and that means it was offseason. So, I tried to pay attention to everything the Penguins did. When the season started again (2015-2016), we went 0-3, and I was not sure how the season was going to go. I convinced myself that I was a bad luck charm, but then I looked back at the 2014-2015 stats, and I realized it wasn’t me.  

I faithfully watched every game. Earlier in the season, I read every article on the Pens and learned about every player so I could get a full understanding for what was going on, and I did. I learned what trades would be good, I learned about Jim Rutherford, and I learned about my team. You can go ahead and call me a bandwagon all you want or you can say I just love hockey to impress guys, but that’s not true, I did not expect to get so into hockey, but it happened because I genuinely love the sport that has changed the lives of many. And I genuinely love the team that has changed my life forever. Thank you, Pittsburgh Penguins!

Samantha Tranquillo

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