Play Like a Girl: Adams goalie Taylor Kinkade changing the standard
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - To play hockey you’ve got to be built differently. But to play goalie, that’s an entirely different breed of its own.
“There has to be a certain level of fearlessness and a certain level of crazy for anybody to play the position of goalie,” said David Murray, head coach of the varsity boys hockey team at John Adams High School.
You also need to gain the trust of your teammates, and defenseman Adam Klaybor has trust in his goalie.
“Very good communicating,” Klaybor said. “As a defenseman, always talking with us, letting us know what’s going on in the play. So, it’s a big help out there on the ice.”
Eagles goalie Taylor Kinkade is using these attributes to set new standards in the sport that she loves.
“My dad used to build rinks in our backyard every year,” Kinkade said. So, when I was 3 years old, my brothers taught me how to skate because they were older and already started playing.”
Kinkade is a 17-year-old goalie for the 7th-ranked boys varsity team in Michiana. Even at a young age, she was used to playing with the boys. But it wasn’t until the age of 10 that she made the switch to goalie.
“My mom knew it was the only way for me to stick with hockey because not a lot of girls play in high school,” Kinkade said.
Kinkade never looked back, competing on a boys team from age 11 on. She faced some difficulties along the way, but she kept on pushing through, making Amie Petrie one proud mama.
“You know, there are some things that just hit me hard, but she could just roll with it,” Petrie said. “And she’ll just be like, ‘I’ve got to keep trying, I’ve got to keep proving to them that I’m just like them.’”
Kinkade’s start to high school hockey wasn’t what she hoped. Struggling with playing time and being the first girl in the history of the team made Taylor feel nervous. It really took until senior year for things to start clicking, both on the ice and with her teammates.
“This year, during the Penn game we won, I felt like everybody kind of saw me as one of the boys,” Kinkade said.
Even Coach Murray could see the changes in Kinkade.
“Taylor has really found her stride, like most seniors do at this point in their career,” Murray said. “She’s gaining that confidence of somebody who knows what’s going on.”
Kinkade is proving that with opportunity and confidence in yourself, you can change the standards we define as normal.
“I know I could do anything a guy could do,” she said. “And if you have that confidence, you’ll be able to do it.”
Kinkade and the Adams Eagles are finishing up their regular season. In her most recent outing last Saturday, Taylor only allowed one goal as the Eagles beat Evansville 6-1.
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