Teen with dreams of playing college hockey spending time in Sewickley

Friday, August 31, 2018 | 10:45 PM

A teen from the state of Indiana moved in recently with a Sewickley couple as part of her goal to play college hockey one day.

Taylor Brandeburg, 18, met Rich MacDonald and Annette Cronauer while playing in youth tournaments with their daughter.

Brandeburg missed her final season of high school hockey after injuring her knee playing lacrosse.

Her father, Glen Brandeburg, said college hockey programs that recruited her suggested she take a gap year. She was accepted by the Pittsburgh Penguins Elite 19U girls team in April.

MacDonald thought about his daughter when Glen Brandeburg called.

Kenzie MacDonald will be a freshman on the Amherst women’s team.

“I immediately asked my wife if she was comfortable hosting Taylor for the school year, already knowing what Annette’s response would be,” said MacDonald, who runs a chiropractic clinic with his wife, both doctors. “We both agreed that if our daughter were in a situation where she needed a home, we would hope someone would step up and help us out.

“We are excited for Taylor’s future and and want to help her in any way.”

Glen Brandeburg said he felt the couple would treat his daughter like family.

Penguins Elite 19U girls coach coach Chris “Sluggo” Stern said Taylor, a defender, is one of three players who has been billeted this year.

“(She) adds to our complement of high-level players,” he said.

Brandeburg attends the EXCEL Hockey Academy.

A partnership between North Catholic High School and the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex, the academy provides an academic program and on-ice and off-ice training.

Brandeburg also will take a class at Carnegie Mellon University and plans to work as a political intern.

She likes Sewickley so far.

“(It) is a very family-oriented town where people sincerely care for one another,” she said. “I especially enjoyed my visit to the (farmers’) market, where I got to see a large number of people interact and contribute to the community.

“I am excited by the diverse collection of stores and restaurants. There are so many great places I want to visit.”

Karen Kadilak is a freelance writer.