SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – When Christian Jimenez hits the ice, it’s like sweet music.
The 17-year-old has the fourth-most points in the USHL among defensemen. But off the ice, Jimenez loves to make music.
“I started playing the guitar when I was like 8. And I started playing the violin when I was about ten or eleven. And a bit of piano, and then it took off from there,” he said. “I’m absolutely in love with music.”
Playing his instruments has become an important hobby for Christian, and it has become something he loves to do whenever he’s not in skates.
“It kind of serves as an escape for me,” said Christian. “When I’m away from the rink it gives me something to do. If I’m feeling stressed or angry I just pick up the guitar, start strumming, start singing.”
But make no mistake, hockey is Christian’s first love. He’s been on skates since pre-k, and it’s been his favorite sport ever since.
“It’s so unique in the sense that it’s played at such a fast pace,” he said. “It’s so physical, and yet your brain has to be thinking with your hands, with your feet. You’re playing with a team so the team aspect is also huge.”
“He’s in it for the guys. You know, his love and passion shows up,” said Muskies Head Coach Luke Strand. “There’s never a doubt on when he’s gonna be there for them.”
Christian says whenever he sets foot on the ice, he’s home.
“I’m in love with the game. And I know it sounds cliche but I wouldn’t be myself without it.”
But Christian believes in balance. It’s something his parents instilled in him early in his life. And it’s become his goal to be a complete young man.
“It’s important to be well-rounded as an individual, and that’s something that my family and myself have always believed in from the start,” said Christian. “So I wouldn’t have even sniffed hockey if I didn’t have all A’s growing up.”
Those A’s have earned Christian an opportunity to play hockey at Harvard. But no matter what his future holds, he says he’ll always play.
“I don’t think I’ll ever stop playing the guitar, and I’m never gonna stop loving hockey,” he said. “Music and hockey, it’s like, I don’t know, it’s always gonna be in my life, it’s always gonna be in my heart. And that’s never gonna change.”