The School Newspaper of Winston Churchill High School.

The Observer

Athlete of the Month: March 2017

Photo+Courtesy+of%3A+Aidan+Liquorie
Photo Courtesy of: Aidan Liquorie

Photo Courtesy of: Aidan Liquorie

Photo Courtesy of: Aidan Liquorie

Will Hyland, Sports Editor

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Nine years ago, junior Jack Taylor laced his skates for the very first time. Today, he is an assistant captain of CHS varsity I hockey, a three time state champion and among the leaders in points in the MSHL.

 

Taylor’s athletic ability, work ethic and leadership has helped to propel not only himself, but also CHS hockey, to new heights, contributing to the Bulldogs’ third straight state championship, an unprecedented achievement for any public school.

 

“It’s really great to be on such a high performing and competitive team,” Taylor said. “It definitely makes the season a lot of fun.”

 

Hockey has been an integral part of Taylor’s life since his early days when he watched and played hockey frequently with his father, John Taylor, who also played in his youth.

 

“I started playing hockey at age six,” John Taylor Sr. said. “I grew up near ponds so I had the benefit of playing on ponds, [as well as] indoor and outdoor rinks.”

 

Taylor has steadily improved each year, scoring 16 points in league play his freshman season and accounting for 32 points last year. This season however, Taylor has taken his game to the next level, achieving a high of 45 points, the most in the MSHL this season.

 

“Jack has made enormous strides as player between freshman year and this year,” Varsity I head coach Ray Mckenzie said. “Every year he has gotten more confident. “He has turned himself into a top MSHL player through his hard work and determination.”

 

Taylor’s successes haven’t been without struggle, as he was sidelined by a foot injury for an extended period of time. He took the extra time off the ice to watch more professional hockey, which he credits with helping to improve his game. He now tries to get closer to the net and give his teammates more opportunities.

 

“I am a sizable net front presence and it always causes me to gain the attention of nearby defenders, which gives other players around me more space, and also lets me get some tap in and rebound goals,” Taylor said.

 

Taylor is respected and admired among his teammates including junior and co-assistant captain Jack Comer, who scored 18 points this season.

 

“He’s a great teammate and gives [great] pregame speeches,” Comer said. “I think he’s [also] improved as a finisher and a playmaker from freshman year until now.”

 

Junior co-assistant captain Dylan Healy, who scored 16 points and was placed on the All-County first team, looks up to Taylor as leader both on and off the ice.

 

“He is a great at scoring in high pressure situations and can carry the team by himself when the we need him to,” Healy said. “He is [also] a great leader for the team in the locker room.”

 

According to Mckenzie, the most impressive thing about Taylor may be his ability to balance lacrosse, which he is committed to play at Brown, and hockey while also being a great leader.

 

“Jack’s ability to balance being an elite hockey and lacrosse player is impressive,” Mckenzie said. “He always positive, has a great attitude, he’s eager to learn and sets a good example for others.”

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