My name is Ben Wakefield. I began my hockey journey much later than most of my teammates. The first time I played was when I was four years old and then not again until I was eleven when I began my first year of Peewee. While at the time, I was just beginning in hockey and learning the game, I believe that my Peewee seasons were the most important ones for the development of my skills. I am very appreciative of my coaches from back then who took the time to mentor a new player and to help me to develop into the athlete that I am today. In my first-year at the Bantam level, I played with 01’s as an 02 on an AA team called the Long Island Icecats and second-year Bantams. I played the next two years with the Jersey Hitmen and then three years with the New Jersey Jr Titans. I am now in my first year of junior hockey with the Lake Tahoe Lakers.
I believe that I could move up from the lowest levels in youth hockey to tier one in a short period of time because of my extreme dedication to the sport. I did this by surrounding myself with other serious players and by working hard to be as coachable as I possibly could. As I continue to develop, I realize the importance of improving my skills through extra skating sessions, a great deal of on-ice work and further developing my hockey IQ by studying other better players in person and on video. In addition, I spend a good deal of time in the gym developing physically; boxing for fitness and doing yoga.
As I look to the future, my goal is to find the right situation academically and athletically, culminating in playing college hockey. While I am still young enough not to make any final decisions on my college major, after taking an elective in entrepreneurship, I learned that I like thinking creatively and would like to put this into practice in a business setting. I would enjoy developing an idea and building it into a business. While I am sure I will consider other areas of interest, at this stage, I am seriously considering finance or business as a major in college. I have I maintained a 3.8 GPA in Honors and AP level classes.
I enjoy working at a local charity called Toni’s Kitchen which provides 22,000 meals a year to those in need. Healthy eating is something very important to me as an athlete, and Toni’s provides healthy food to those who otherwise would not have them in my community. I am proud to be a part of this endeavor and enjoy that I do this with my mom. It combines my closeness to family with the strong values that they have taught me. I have also worked as a volunteer at ‘Be the Best Sport’ which is an organization that provides sports and socialization for children with special needs. I have a cousin with special needs and I enjoy spending time with him while helping here. This experience is a reminder to me of how fortunate I am to be healthy and to be able to pursue my dreams on and off the ice.