LaGrange Hockey Community Gives Back With Presents For Toys for Tots
Those with more did something for those with less. That is what it came down to.
In the name of good will the LaGrange Street Hockey League gave back to the community on Sunday afternoon with the 4th Annual Toys for Tots matches. Two games were played with one kids match and one adult contest.
Shots were taken. Goals were scored, and hockey sticks were raised in celebration. But more important than that was the fact that the local hockey league and its players came together on one afternoon with the hopes of collecting Christmas presents for those who are less fortunate.
The LaGrange Street Hockey League did that in a big way. Thanks to 29 area hockey players and numerous fans, some Christmas cheer did spill over into the hockey rink at the Mike Daniel Recreation Center. Santa Claus approves, as does Glenn Cunningham, a coach and player for the local hockey group. “There is a need in Troup County (at Christmastime), and when a kid gets a present, he (or she) is going to be happy. We have three boxes of toys, and this feels great. This is all about the kids,” said Cunningham.
The United States Marine Corps Reserves will now distribute the toys to Troup County children for Christmas. The presents include a bicycle, a soccer ball, a backpack, some toy trucks, several footballs, a teddy bear, some dolls, a lunch box and a Nerf gun. “We’re helping the community, and we’re helping out kids,” said LaGrange 10-year-old hockey player Landen Gogel, a goaltender.
As for the first hockey match of Sunday afternoon, in the kids game, the Little Blues beat the Little Red Wings, 2-1. Ava Ogle, a third-grader from La-Grange, got some major minutes. Ogle also made some smart hockey plays. “I’m learning how to pass, shoot and score goals. I’m getting my energy out so I don’t get too crazy,” said Ogle.
Another local girl, Katie Barnes, a 12 year old, took an active part in the Toys for Tots kids game, too.
“I was running and having fun. I’ve been playing hockey for a month,” said Barnes.
Goaltender Dylan Stotsky made some saves and some friends as well. Stotsky is another 12 year old with a flaming passion for the game of hockey.
“We were passing more and saving more. Hockey takes hand-eye coordination and strength,” said Stotsky.
Gage Harris, a 7-yearold hockey fanatic, played some hard fought minutes in the kids match, too.
“I had a good time, and I got a (healthy) workout. I ran fast, and I made some friends. I had one assist,” said Harris.
Hayden Pope was another real life hockey player in the rink, too. Pope is nine years old, and he is starting to grasp the basics of street hockey.
“This is a good sport, but you have to work with your teammates. You need to control the puck, and you do get to have some fun,” said Pope.
Eleven-year-old Colin Stotsky was also holding his stick and playing some authentic street hockey. Stotsky never wanted the kids game to end.
“We were running and scoring. We were exercising,” said Stotsky.