November 22, 2017 10:49 PM
(ABC 6 News) – When asking the Lourdes Eagles girls hockey team about their first year as a stand-alone program, they’d tell you they’re “exceeding expectations”—just like their star sophomore, Emma Schmitz.
“There’s things about Emma that stand out,” Eagles head girls hockey coach Jeff True. “If you don’t know anything about hockey, you can watch 15 minutes of her skating and you’ll realize her skating is unique and dynamic.”
Schmitz, who’s only a sophomore and in her first year of high school girls hockey (Schmitz played youth hockey with the Rochester 15UA’s the previous two years), has put together a solid star to her high school career.
“To know that I get to coach her for another three full seasons, that’s pretty exciting,” True said.
“I’m just going to play for fun,” Schmitz said. “I love the sport, I’m just going to play. It’s going to be more difficult (than youth league) because I’m playing against juniors and seniors, people who are committed places, but I believe it’ll be better for me because I’m going against harder players. This change is really good.”
In the Eagles’ 6-2 win over Simley on Friday, Schmitz recorded a hat trick.
“If I have a chance to shoot, I’ll shoot,” Schmitz said. “Not every shot is going to be perfect, but I think if me and my team work together, everybody will get a shot to score.”
True said, with games like that against Simley, Schmitz is only providing a “glimpse” of the kind of talent she possesses.
“Being able to see the play happen and develop before it actually happens, that’s something special a lot of people don’t possess as hockey players or as athletes,” True said. “Her vision, her IQ, her hockey sense, the intangibles that makes a good hockey player really stands out. To see that as a sophomore, that’s pretty unique.”
Schmitz isn’t just a talented, rising hockey star in Rochester—she’s coachable, and she’s always challenging herself (Schmitz said she wants to improve on passing and making complete passes to her teammates among other areas of her game).
“I’ve got to get my shot harder and be more physical, “ Schmitz said. “I’m not that tall, but I think that anybody can be strong. If you’re short, you’re tall, you can still be very strong.”
“She’s always one of our most upbeat skaters and always practicing as if she wants to get better each day,” True added. “When I want to address something with her, maybe an area she needs to improve on, she looks me in the eye and she takes it as a serious constructive piece of feedback. She wants to get better every day.”
Schmitz and the Eagles return to the ice on Friday at St. Croix Valley.
Updated: November 22, 2017 10:49 PM
Created: November 21, 2017 09:52 PM
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