BBD Captain Christian Gardecki shines both on and off the ice
By Jesse Peters (@CTHSHockeyJesse)
The biggest benefit of CTHSHockey is meeting players from all over CT who you would normally not have had the chance to meet. Last year at Yale, during the Division III "Battle of Wallingford" Final, I was lucky enough to talk with BBD’s Christian Gardecki. I was so impressed that I decided to catch up with him this week to see what he has been up to.
Q: How long have you been playing hockey?
A: I have been playing for 14 years. I began in the Fall of 2006 playing out of Danbury Arena hockey development and cross-ice programs. I played for Western through squirts. Bantams, I played at Pawling. I finished at Kent with some guys who play on Housatonic now.
Q: What was your most memorable moment playing High School Hockey?
A: Personally, scoring my first High School goal during my sophomore year against Pawling, NY. It was special because it was against a bunch of former teammates. As a team, my most memorable moment was upsetting LHK in the 2018 SCC Semis in a shootout. It was the same season as my first goal; so thrilling and fun.
Q: Name a coach, player, fan or person that has influenced you the most?
A: I think it’s gotta be former Wilton HS Coach John Miserendino. He stuck by me in squirts. Then, he asked me to play for his midget team before my sophomore season. He was definitely instrumental in my development as a player.
Q: I know you wear many hats off the ice. What age did you start getting into blogging?
A: I started blogging about the Sound Tigers/Islanders in 8th grade. In the 9th grade, I joined Drive4Five and ALLIslanders. In that same 9th grade year, I joined our high school's video production club.
Q: What was the first game that you did a broadcast for?
A: A girl's volleyball game between Danbury and Norwalk.
Q: I see you have roles with both the Danbury Westerners and the Danbury Hat Tricks?
A: With the Danbury Westerners (New England Collegiate Baseball League), I started as a videographer in 2018 and then was promoted to full-time PA announcer in 2019-20. With the Danbury Hat Tricks (Federal Prospects Hockey League), I started this season running the clock only. After some persistence and luck, I was able to land the timekeeper/PA announcer position after a vacancy occurred shortly after the start of the season.
Christian is now the timekeeper/in-house voice of the Danbury Hat Tricks. Christian teases he has some special gigs lined up as well but announcements are still to come, so keep an eye out.
Q: What have all of these experiences taught you?
A: I’ve learned to be a leader in doing anything. I think that is what has helped me get the captain's “C” this season and it goes to being a humble person as well.
Q: What are your plans after CTHS Hockey?
A: I am looking at schools with Broadcast Journalism. Right Now the top two are Hofstra and Full Sail in Orlando.
Q: Favorite Hockey Movie of all time?
A: Ooh, I have always been a Mighty Ducks guy. I think the second one is my favorite.
In closing, we discussed the ups and downs of this season's BBD squad and Christian's expectations for the rest of the year. “Obviously it's been a tough start,” said Christian, as the Ice Cats currently hold a 2-9-2 record. “I think we have some horses that can turn it up."
Christian’s ultimate goal for him and his Ice Cats teammates would be to rely on their junior-heavy roster to grind out some wins and qualify for the state tournament. “I would love to get a state tournament win." It has been 6 years since the Ice Cats last win in the tournament. “I think if we can rattle off a few wins and get some confidence, we will be a tough team to beat” when playoffs arrive.
Photo courtesy of Eadevito Photography.