Chidester strives to contribute for top-ranked GVSU hockey

Tribune Staff • Jul 21, 2015 at 11:22 AM

Weekends consist of hockey games and working on Sundays.

And he’s only a freshman in college.

Chidester, 19, is one of three goaltenders — the lone freshman — for the Grand Valley State University’s defending national champion hockey team, which competes in the American Collegiate Hockey Association at the Division II level.

When he’s not attending classes — where he’s studying biomedical sciences in order to become an oral surgeon — or doing homework back home in Grand Haven, Chidester can be found at one of two places: the gym or the rink.

Chidester works evening shifts at Powerhouse Gym before he heads to Georgetown Ice Center in Allendale for practice on Tuesday and Thursday nights. On Wednesdays, he coaches the Grand Valley Stars Bantam House Team’s goaltenders.

Chidester’s love for hockey and being a goaltender became obvious at an early age.

“The first time I played (goalie) was in roller hockey, and I might not have been able to stop any shots, but I still loved it,” he says. “There’s something about the increased amount of pressure or knowing that you can control the outcome of the game. It’s an intense feeling. It’s almost addicting.”

After graduating from Grand Haven High School in 2010, Chidester took a year off from school to play junior hockey after he was invited to play for the Jamestown Jets organization in New York.

“(I did it) to see if I could get any scholarships. That’s the avenue that most hockey players go through to contact colleges and possibly get scholarships, or a skate with a college,” he explained.

To read more of this story, see today's print or E-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.

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