It could be argued that a hockey goaltender occupies the most demanding position in any team sport More so than a quarterback in football, or a baseball pitcher, a goaltender puts his team his shoulders every time out.
Rocco Bruno has embraced that challenge. The St. Joseph’s Prep senior and Springfield Township, Delaware County resident has achieved success on the ice and in the classroom.
Bruno prides himself on his ability to maintain his concentration in the heat of battle. He considers that attribute that one of his strengths.
“It’s definitely (about) staying focused,” he said. “Not letting anything distract you. I’ve got to make sure I’m paying attention to my D-men and I’m talking to them.
I have to keep control of a lot of things at once, but I can’t get distracted by anybody other than who’s on the ice.”
Bruno has enhanced his ability to concentrate in the classroom as well, although admittedly that ability didn’t come easily. He learned about St. Joseph’s Prep though his coach, David Giacomin.
“I did a couple of open houses and I fell in love with the school,” Bruno recalls.
Adapting to academic rigors of St. Josephs Prep proved challenging at first.
“I definitely had to learn it the hard way,” Bruno said. “Freshman year was a struggle for me, just because I really didn’t know how to manage my time the correct way, but as the year went on, I started to figure stuff out. I took a lot of bad grades on tests but I definitely got in shape the last three years.”
Over time, Bruno learned that meeting his academic responsibilities while also playing high-school and club hockey demanded that he reorder his priorities.
Rocco Bruno (photo by. R. Woelfel)
“(Make) sacrifices honestly,” said. “A lot of late nights studying, a lot of early getting to school and finishing up things that I didn’t get done the night before. At school, in my free periods, getting work done, trying to stay ahead of the game so I don’t fall behind and just time management. Managing my time was the biggest part in making sure everything was done.”
Bruno has enjoyed his time at St. Joseph’s Prep and bonding with his teammates and classmates.
“I’ve met a lot of great people there,” he said. “It’s something you have to be a part of to understand, honestly.”
Bruno sees the college application process as a reward for all the hours he’s spent pursuing better grades.
“The most satisfying thing has been just getting into the colleges,” he said. “It’s really weird right now for me because I’m going through the who college application process. Getting into colleges, and then acknowledging my hard word that I put into high school. It’s really, really refreshing.”
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