Senior wins scholarship for most improved hockey player

Ziv+and+the+rest+of+the+varsity+hockey+team+head+out+onto+the+ice+during+a+game.

Photo courtesy of Mike Ziv

Ziv and the rest of the varsity hockey team head out onto the ice during a game.

Playing in cold rinks, skating across ice, and defending the goal, all things senior and goalie Mike Ziv has plenty of experience in after his four years of being on the school’s hockey team.

At this year’s end of the year banquet for hockey, Ziv was given the Jennifer Downer Scholarship award, which is given to the most improved hockey player out of all of the high schools in New Hampshire.

“This award was given out to a hockey player who has shown perseverance, team work, and dedication to the game of hockey,” Ziv said. “It meant a lot to me, because it showed that my hard work paid off. I was never the most skilled hockey player, but I put everything I had into being the best that I could. When I got the award, I was in shock, but I remember looking at my mom and smiling, seeing her tears of joy.”

His path to this award started 10 years ago, when he began playing hockey.

“I went to a lot of Monarch’s games when I was younger, and I loved them,” Ziv said. “That’s when I decided I wanted to play. The people that made me continue were definitely my parents. They never lost faith in my ability to play hockey.

Soon after he started, he realized that this was the sport for him and quickly fell in love with it.

“I just love how fast paced the sport is,” Ziv said. “The physical aspect of the sport is so fun and entertaining.”

Because he enjoys hockey so much, getting the chance to move up and play on varsity was a big deal to him.

“My favorite memory of the team was my sophomore year, when I started in my first varsity game and got a shutout,” Ziv said.

However, to Ziv, his time on the team has been about more than the game itself.

“Playing hockey for the school has been more than being on the ice, the friendships I made I wouldn’t trade for anything,” Ziv said. 

Ziv values the friends he has made, and they certainly reciprocate that sentiment.

“He absolutely deserved that award,” senior hockey player Sam Siebert said. “He was a good kid all four years, contributed a lot to our team, and was always a great person to be around in the locker room.”

Though he had some tough times on the team, he always stayed positive for his teammates.

“I don’t think I ever heard that kid complain in the four years, even when he broke his thumb,” Siebert said. “I’m really happy that he got that scholarship.”

Next year, Ziv will head to UNH and will continue to play intramural hockey. He will use what his time playing for the school has taught him to guide him through.

“Playing hockey for the school has made me a stronger person, because of all the setbacks I went through,” Ziv said. “I now know the feeling of failure. I had to end my senior hockey season with a broken finger, which I was really sad about, because I couldn’t play on senior night. I have learned to always work as hard as possible, whether in a game or practice, because you will never know when it is your last.”

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