At the ripe age of five, Kayleigh Petersen began playing hockey. This East Brunswick, New Jersey native is also currently enrolled in ballet, hip-hop dancing and gymnastics.
Kayleigh’s speed, skill and courage happened to catch the attention of the New York Rangers scouts. They were impressed with the talent she showed at her Intro to Hockey lessons over the last two seasons along with her most recent stint at a full day hockey camp.
Scouts were so impressed that she became the first female athlete in franchise history to sign a one-day free agent contract. And she is just eight years old.
“She has tremendous skills and we felt her strength and character are through the roof,” said Adam Graves, Rangers Hockey Operations Department. “We are proud and honored to have her as a part of the Rangers organization.”
Kayleigh was able to suit up with the Rangers and join the team on ice before the Colorado Avalanche at Madison Square Garden (MSG) in December. Imagine that?
Check out this adorable video of Kayleigh doing a half-time interview. She might have played shy but still managed to light up during the interview.
Kayleigh, who had to get a liver transplant, was a recipient of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of New Jersey for this special occasion and had a full schedule, including this game.
The game was a part of the “Garden of Dreams Night” and helped raise awareness for the Garden of Dreams Foundation. The Garden of Dreams Foundation is a non-profit organization that works with The Madison Square Garden Company and MSG Networks Inc. to positively impact the lives of children facing obstacles. For more information about “Garden of Dreams Night” go here.
Kayleigh is an incredible athlete in the making, for sure!