Tegan Buchanan (18), of Cromwell, is extremely busy.
Not only is she head girl at Cromwell College and has to focus on her school work, she also played for Southern Hockey’s under-18 women’s regional team this season, which meant driving to Dunedin on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday after school for practice and then again on Saturday for the game.
She was also selected to play for the Ford National Hockey League open team.
The NHL team ended the season eighth out of eight on the table, but that did not worry team members, she said.
“It was so good and we competed really well with some the top teams, and they were full of Black Sticks,” Tegan said.
“We didn’t do too flash but we are very competitive.
“It’s good fun and they are good team members and good friends.”
The U18 team’s coach is Mat Rooney and her mum, Viv Buchanan, is team manager.
Her NHL coach is Tina Bell-Kake.
Tegan has played hockey throughout her schooling.
“I like the fitness and the speed – it’s fast and I like the stick skills.”
She practises at the hockey centre in Cromwell most days during the season, when not driving to Dunedin to practise with the team.
In addition to playing at a regional level, she also took part in the Central Otago secondary schools competition recently, and played social hockey at the Cromwell Hockey Club on Friday nights.
She plays touch socially for the school, as well as social netball, and enjoys going for runs for extra training.
She also competes in a team of four in multisport adventure racing, which takes place over 12 hours.
The last time she entered, she and her team, which includes her mum, came third in the Spring Challenge in Takaka.
In addition, she is working on her Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award and helps out at the Cromwell Museum, where her grandparents work.
She also works part-time at Paper Plus and coaches primary school children for Kelly Sports.
She was keen to continue to play in the NHL, Tegan said.
“I’ve learned so much and I want to keep improving as a hockey player and see where it takes me.
“I would encourage other young people to get involved in hockey, as it is a very skilful, good all-round sport.”
She intended to go to university but was unsure what she wanted to study at this stage, she said.
She was grateful to her sponsors for their support, she said.