The future looks so bright for Nelson’s Reece Hunt that this elite female hockey player had better zip down to the nearest sunglass outlet to pick up a nice pair of shades.
Hunt, who has been burning up the BC Hockey Female Midget AAA Hockey League with the Kootenay Wild this season, recently accepted a full-ride scholarship to NCAA Division I Bemidji State University in Minnesota beginning in 2019-20.
“Bemidji is a great school so I was really excited,” Hunt told The Nelson Daily recently.
“(Getting a hockey scholarship) has been my goal for some time.”
Hunt will have a few more years to refine her skills as the Nelson resident is only in Grade 10.
However, this season has been one for the archives for the Nelson Minor Hockey grad.
In the fall of 2016, the 5’5” sniper was part of Team BC’s bronze medal squad at the at the National Women's U18 Championship in Regina.
The win tied the best ever finish at the tournament for a Team BC squad.
Then it was on to the BC Female Midget AAA Hockey League where Hunt led the Wild in points, putting up impressive numbers to finish tied for second in league scoring with 16 goals and 15 assists in 29 games.
However, the capper, ruling out of course the Wild win the BC Female title, would be inking a letter of intent with the Bemidji Beavers Women’s Team.
“Bemidj has a great hockey program and good history in men's and women’s hockey,” Hunt explained.
“They have excellent coaches and facilities and also have brought in lots of really good players for next year and the year after.”
Hunt said the nice “small town” setting at Bemidj also played into her decision.
“People told me that I would know which one was the perfect fit me and this was the one,” she said.
Now that the future has been settled, it’s back to the rink for Hunt and Company.
The Wild, which have drastically improved this season, advanced in the BC Hockey Female Midget AAA Hockey League playoff last weekend in Trail by sweeping past Vancouver Island Seals 2-0.
Hunt scored twice while adding an assist during the 4-1 opening win.
She then collected an assist in the series clinching 3-2 win as Kelsey Patterson scored twice for the Wild.
“We have a great team of defence, forwards and goalies as well as great coaches so has been a lot of fun,” said Hunt as the Wild now travel to Coquitlam this weekend to face the Greater Vancouver Comets.
“I had the opportunity to play a little last year which made the season easier as a rookie.”
Hunt said also being part of the Academy in Trail has allow the sister of American Hockey League Springfield Thunderbirds rookie Dryden Hunt and Nelson Leafs captain Sawyer Hunt to improve her skills as she combines education and hockey on a daily schedule.
“This has been an awesome year all around and has been a lot of fun.”
Once the Female League has concluded, Hunt will once again shoot for a spot on the BC Under 18 Team as tryouts commence in the spring.
Best grab a pair of shades en route to the tryouts on Vancouver Island.
“I will work hard to try and make the team again,” she said.
“Last year as an underage was such a good learning experience so excited for this year if I make the team.”
Will that be Oakley, Ray-Ban or Gucci?