Issue 3: Playing For The Rivals

Robinson junior dishes out on playing for his school’s South Tampa rival

Hyland+%28left%29+in+the+Riverview+Sharks+uniform+at+a+hockey+game+against+Jesuit+High+School+this+past+season.

Photo Courtesy of J. Hyland

Hyland (left) in the Riverview Sharks’ uniform at a hockey game against Jesuit High School this past season.

Juno Le, Online Managing Editor

While Robinson offers a wide variety of sports, the choices don’t satisfy every student. For sports such as hockey, some Knights have chosen to step into enemy territory in order to play their sport. Prior to this school year, Robinson students have been able to join the hockey team at Plant High School, the Knights’ South Tampa rival. Plant had a mix of Tampa Prep, Hillsborough and Robinson High School students playing for their hockey team.

This year, however, Plant has decided to cleanse themselves of the enemy by having Plant-students-only teams since hockey is growing a lot in the Tampa Bay area and have had too many students trying out for the team. Students who want to continue playing the sport had to find another school’s team.

Jadyn Hyland (’22) is a student at Robinson who played for Plant’s hockey team in his freshman year but has moved to Riverview High School’s team since Plant’s purification. He’s played hockey since he was 4-years-old and the only way he could play at a high school level was to try out for Plant’s team since Robinson doesn’t offer the sport.

“When I was on the Plant team, it was definitely interesting because I was playing with guys that go to my rival school but on the ice, it was strictly hockey, so it didn’t really have an effect on me,” Hyland said. Robinson and Plant have had a long-time rivalry, usually surrounding football but the tension still remains for other events.

A lot of the time, both sides like to parade their school pride in t-shirts and school merchandise, like the “Beat Plant” shirts and hoodies. Hyland, however, had two teams he was representing.

“I would wear my Plant Hockey t-shirt around school hoping that Robinson students would come to our games, but I would get comments like ‘you’ve got guts to wear that’ and ‘take that shirt off’ from both students and teachers,” Hyland said.

Now he’s playing for the Riverview Sharks in order to continue his high school hockey career. The rivalry has caused some awkward tension between Hyland and his peers, but his focus remains on hockey and as long as he can play, that’s all that really matters.