BALLYMONEY lad Christopher Boyd has just returned home from America following the experience of a lifetime.
The Ballymoney High School pupil (13) travelled to Los Angeles as part of the Great Britain Under 12 roller hockey team to take part in the American Athletic Junior Olympics.
The event attracted the precocious cream of the sporting world with Christopher coming up against rivals from across the globe.
The local net-minder from Seacon Park - who plays for the Northern Cyclones Inline Hockey Club - started the majority of the games for the Great Britain side.
He was the last line of defence against Canada, Hawaii, China, Hong Kong and three sides from the USA.
And he was kept busy throughout the tournament, winning widespread acclaim from watching coaches and spectators.
Proud mum June, told Times Sport: “He really had a great time.
“It was tough going but a fantastic experience to play at that level.
“The heat was exceptional but the team did very well.
“It really was the experience of a lifetime.”
Great Britain battled to the quarter-final stage of the competition, eventually losing out to an American team.
While he didn’t return with a medal, Christopher touched down in Northern Ireland with a brand new kit and set of skates.
He took up the sport aged seven, largely due to another net-minding ace from Ballymoney, Andrew Dickson, who recently re-signed with the Belfast Giants ice hockey team.
June says Andrew is “like a big brother” to Christopher and is always on hand to offer guidance and advice to the young protege who he coached as part of the Ballymoney Badgers set-up in the past.
During his time at the Cyclones his teams has won the Under 12 and Under 14 leagues both years as well as the Under 12 and Under 14 play-off championship.
Last year he became the only goalie in the history of the league not to concede a goal in the whole of a season in his Under 12 league.
As well as playing roller hockey for the Northern Cyclones, Christopher is the Under 12 and Under 14 net-minder for the Junior Belfast Giants Ice Hockey team and has played several times at the Odyssey in Belfast.