New Mexico girls star Hartinger moves up to St. Louis AAA club
Taylor Hartinger is living proof that talent exists in the New Mexico girls ranks.
And for the 2018-19 season, the St. Louis hockey community will learn that as well as Hartinger will be playing for the St. Louis Lady Blues 14U AAA team.
“This is very exciting for our family,” said Taylor’s father and coach Vladimir Hartinger. “She started playing hockey much later than most of her teammates on the New Mexico Warriors. She had to work really hard to get where she is right now.
“I think the whole idea of playing AAA hockey really started last December when we took Taylor to Detroit. She was invited to try out for the West Coast Selects and had to compete against some really good girls. From this time on, her focus was to get better so she would have an opportunity to make a 14U AAA team and play higher level hockey.”
Hartinger played in a few girls spring tournaments in Minneapolis with the 14U AAA Blue Notes (St. Louis) and 14U AAA Team Colorado. This drove her even more to want to play girls AAA hockey as she enjoyed the competition and physical aspect of the game.
“This was something I did not expect at all,” said Hartinger, on making the Lady Blues. “I worked really worked hard to get better and I’m glad I did. I had a goal last season to try to play at a higher level with girls or boys hockey. Working with my dad doing extra practices with him, he really helped me to get better and it improved my skills.”
Down the line, Hartinger has huge aspirations in the game of hockey.
“I would love to play in the Olympics,” she said. “My dream would be to play for the U.S. or for the Czech Republic since my dad is from there. Hockey is something I grew up with. I remember watching and cheering for my dad when he played.
“Now, he watches and cheers for me.”
— Matt Mackinder
(Aug. 16, 2018)