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Thursday

April 2014

24

Girls hockey

Smith the tip of the iceberg for Glacier

Mukwonago skater among state's elite

To say she's been a key player spearheading the rise up the ranks would be an understatement.

Arianna Smith of Mukwonago is the leader of the Brookfield Glacier, one of the top high school girls hockey programs in the state. The co-op includes multiple schools, including players from Brookfield, Waukesha and Kettle Moraine.

After 21 games, Smith's statistics are eye-popping. The junior has scored 28 goals and doesn't slight her teammates, handing out 31 assists. She's tied for third in the state in scoring, just ahead of her teammate, senior Morgan Hollowell.

Smith and the Glacier have dominated the Eastern Shores Conference, sporting an undefeated 11-0-0 record. Overall, the Glacier have skated to an 20-2-2 record. One of the losses came at the hands of Onalaska, the state's No. 1 ranked team. The other skid occurred against a highly regarded team from Chicagoland.

Last year, the Glacier surprised the state by qualifying for the state girls hockey tournament, where they lost to Onalaska in the semifinals at the Alliant Energy Center last March, 5-4. The game went four overtimes.

The 16-year-old, a member of Team Wisconsin with select players ages 19 and under, doesn't dwell on last year's success, nor is she surprised this year's team has fared so well.

"Everyone of this team works hard," she said. "We know we have to if we want to be successful again. Last year we believed in ourselves and maybe didn't get all that much respect, but this year we've taken on a different role, and we definitely have a target on our backs."

Hard work defines Smith, who also excels in the classroom. She's carrying a 3.97 grade point average, concentrating on advanced placement courses in Math, Biology, English and German.

Despite her busy schedule which includes six days on the ice, she still finds time for piano lessons and lends a hand mentoring younger players with the Waukesha Warhawks Youth Hockey Program.

"Arianna takes her hockey very seriously and it would be hard to find a player more committed or dedicated to the game," said Glacier head coach Brian Smith, Arianna's father. "On the ice and in the locker room, she displays a sincere amount of humility toward her peers and plays the game with an empowering attitude and passion."

The WIAA regionals began Feb. 12. The top-seeded Glacier, now ranked No. 2 in the state, open play Thursday against either Waupaca or Beaver Dam. Arianna Smith will be one of the top players in the tournament.

"She's been a key player and certainly the hardest working player I've seen in the last nine years," said Kevin Cline, an assistant coach for the Glacier. "Her work ethic sets her apart from other players. Plus, this season, I've seen her become more and more confident."

Glacier win ESC

The Brookfield Glacier clinched the Eastern Shores Conference by defeating Bay Area in overtime, 3-2.

Arianna Smith and Hollowell each scored a goal and had assists. Trinity Robinson had an unassisted goal for the Glacier (20-2-2).

Smith's goal was the game-winner, coming on a power play in overtime.

"We work on our power play for a few minutes at the start of most practices but we have never seen it executed as well as we did tonight," coach Brian Smith said. "The puck movement was spectacular."

Jenna Bales had 20 saves for the Glacier.

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