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The Purbalite

The student news site of Baldwin High School

The Purbalite

The student news site of Baldwin High School

The Purbalite

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Neighborhood helped start Plinta’s hockey journey

Last year, Plinta was named a WPIAL all-star.
Jacob Staley
Last year, Plinta was named a WPIAL all-star.

Senior Tanner Plinta credits his neighbors who had played ice hockey for Baldwin with getting him started in the sport.

“I started playing hockey when I was 5,” Plinta said. “My next-door neighbors are Baldwin alums who introduced me to the sport.”

When he first started with the sport, it wasn’t just ice hockey he played. He also played roller hockey.

Plinta plays center for the ice hockey team, which is the most important position on the ice besides goalie. So far this year, he has eight goals, leading the team. He has had 25 goals in his four years of varsity hockey.

Playing the sport for 13 years, he was bound to make some great memories. The greatest came when he was a freshman and the Baldwin ice hockey team won the state championship.

“Those guys on that team made it a great first year for me,” he said. “My favorite memory from the run we made was beating T.J. to go to the finals,” he said.

Another fun memory he has comes from when his club team traveled to nationals in Minnesota. His team went 2-2. He led his team in points and finished 17th in the whole tournament with two goals and three assists.

Last year, Plinta was named a WPIAL all-star.

“It was a great accomplishment for me,” he said. “It was fulfilling seeing all my hard work pay off.”

Junior Trevor Brain recognizes Plinta as a leader and a key part of the program.

“He leads the team in scoring and always helps us get ready to play,” Brain said. “He always makes sure everyone is included and knows what is going on at all points in the game. He always has us keep the energy up no matter what the score is.”

Junior Gabriel Herrle knows Plinta wants what is best for the team and gives them the leadership that some younger guys need.

“Tanner is good at telling you what you did wrong and helping you fix it instead of just yelling at you. His criticism is always constructive,” Herrle said. 

With this season off to a difficult start, Plinta thinks that the team cannot get down on themselves after a loss. 

“We have to use losses as motivation,” he said. “It is the only way we can get better in games like those.”

Despite the rough season, Plinta still tries to be a motivator for the team.

“I try to stay confident for the team to look up to me,” he said. “I want to keep trust in my teammates to help them feel confident.”

Plinta plans to play club hockey at the next level to be able to focus more on college studies rather than hockey.

“My goal for next year is to properly plan between hockey and college,” he said. “The plan is to play Division I club hockey.”

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About the Contributors
Sean Galentine
Sean Galentine, Multimedia Editor
Multimedia Editor Sean Galentine is a junior in his second year on the Purbalite. He can usually be found listening to music or playing games.
Jacob Staley
Jacob Staley, Sports Editor
Sports Editor Jacob Staley is a fourth-year writer and a senior. He can be found playing or watching basketball or football with his friends, or listening to music.
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