RCHS senior is living his hockey dream
By Kathy Fallert; photos courtesy of the Saenger family
Castle Pines resident since the age of 1 and Rock Canyon High School (RCHS) senior, Jacob Saenger, has had some exciting experiences this year when it comes to his favorite sport – hockey. After multiple years of playing AAA hockey in Colorado, Jacob decided to play for his high school team so he could compete for RCHS and enjoy his senior year. However, given the uncertainty surrounding high school sports from COVID-19, he was recruited to play juniors hockey in the United States Premier Hockey League (USPHL) in Detroit, Michigan. His success led him to be featured in several hockey publications.
As if that wasn’t exciting enough, Jacob who plays forward, was picked up on February 10 by the North American 3 Hockey League (NA3HL) Missoula Junior Bruins, which moved him from Detroit to Missoula, Montana to bolster their top lines, power plays and penalty kill lines for the upcoming divisional and national playoffs. The USPHL and NA3HL are similar leagues, however, the Bruins are currently second in their division and are positioned to go deep into the playoffs.
Athleticism runs strong in the Saenger family, as younger brother Breck, a sophomore at RCHS, is the kicker for the varsity football team, goalie for the varsity soccer team and shooting guard/small forward for the sophomore basketball team. When Jacob is not busy with hockey, school or hanging out with friends, his favorite hobby is spending time at the lake wakeboarding and wake surfing. The family enjoys weekends at Jackson Lake State Park in northeastern Colorado or will jaunt over to Chatfield for some quick rides during the week.
Jacob first put on skates and started playing ice hockey at the age of 7 and looks forward to playing at the collegiate level. He commented, “Moving from Detroit to Montana has been amazing! I never thought I would be recruited to a new team half-way through the season to contribute to Missoula’s playoff push. I was nervous to join the team that has been together all year and didn’t know how the players would react when I arrived. But once I got to Montana, the family that I am living with and all of the guys have been amazing. I cannot thank God and my family enough for supporting me on this journey.”
Jacob will remain in Missoula until the regular season ends and possibly into the third week of April, depending how far they go in the playoffs. He continues to take a full class load online and will graduate this spring with a 3.4 GPA in spite of traveling out of town an average of twice per month during each of his high school years.
Jacob has been accepted into his top five university choices, which are Colorado State University (CSU), Arizona, Oklahoma, Arizona State and the University of Northern Colorado. With the continued uncertainty that the pandemic is having on in-person learning and collegiate athletics, he will either stay in state and attend CSU this fall or continue his hockey career with another year of juniors hockey. His ultimate goal is to play hockey for his college.
Jacob’s mom, Lynnetta, remarked, “We could not be prouder of Jacob! While we miss his sense of humor and his can’t-miss presence around the house, we are excited to see what God has planned for Jacob, living out his dream to play and succeed in juniors and even at the collegiate level!”