Way more than a game

Connor+Chapman%2C+senior%2C++and+KHS+varsity+hockey+teammates+embrace+after+a+game.+%0A

Lainey Hogg

Connor Chapman, senior, and KHS varsity hockey teammates embrace after a game.

The slap of wood on plastic is his only clue before a high speed puck slams into his foot; breaking it. But the story doesn’t start there. Let’s go back to the beginning. It all started at the age of 2 when Connor Chapman first learned how to skate. 

He used to live in Atlanta, Georgia where his dad worked as a hockey coach. He would always take Chapman to work with him and Chapman would get to skate around on the ice. He started playing at just 6 years old. Now, he is a senior and plays forward on the KHS varsity hockey team

He moved to Kirkwood in sixth grade. It was a rough transition, especially with the added awkwardness of middle school. But he was able to make a few friends, especially through hockey. 

During Chapman’s freshman year he faced a big challenge: earning a spot on varsity. As a 14-year-old, he had to go up against 18-year-old senior players. But he did it, he made the team. Then, while doing tipping drills during his spring practices, someone took a slap shot that nailed him right on the foot. And with that one shot, he was out for the majority of his first varsity season.

“[Sitting out for most of the season] was pretty upsetting, just to watch everybody play [in] high school and it was my first year and I couldn’t just go do it,” Chapman said.

“[Sitting out for most of the season] was pretty upsetting, just to watch everybody play [in] high school and it was my first year and I couldn’t just go do it,””

— Connor Chapman

Luckily enough, though, his mom is in physical therapy and she helped him rehabilitate his foot in about three weeks. While he missed the majority of his first season, he played in a few of the playoff games. 

Breaking his foot his first year of varsity may have been a difficult experience for Chapman, but it helped make him appreciate hockey more. It helped him realize just how big of an impact hockey had in his life that ‘it’s way more than a game’.