by John Sherman
From the beginning of the season until the final game of the State Class AA Girls Hockey Tournament, head coach Sami Reber relied on Edina’s depth.
The Hornets’ ability to roll three lines was instrumental in the team’s success.
“The players on Edina’s third line would be on the first line on a lot of teams,” said Wayzata head coach Jess Christopherson, whose team lost to the Hornets twice during the Lake Conference season.
“I was comfortable putting each of our 10 forwards on the ice in any situation,” Reber said during the state tourney.
The same was true for Edina’s defensemen, who were led by senior captain Grace Bowlby, a four-time All-Lake Conference player and two-year team captain.
Let’s meet the 2016-17 Hornets, in numerical order.
#1 Megan Smith – The junior goalie is heir apparent to this season’s senior standout, Anna Goldstein. Smith didn’t see action during the state tourney, however, she had a great regular season, allowing only two goals in 306 minutes, while posting a 6-0-0 record.
#4 Olivia Swaim – A sophomore forward, Swaim participated in the scoring during the regular season and scored her most significant goal in the state-championship game when the Hornets downed the Blaine Bengals 4-0. She played left wing on Edina’s third line.
#6 Eva Hendrikson – The junior defenseman has one of the hardest slapshots in the Lake Conference and also is strong in the defensive end. She will be a defensive leader next season with the graduation of the All-State first-team defender, Grace Bowlby.
#7 Savanna Atol – Like Hendrikson, Atol will look for a bigger role in the Hornets’ defensive success next season. She does a good job of covering and cutting off lanes in the defensive end.
#8 Mallory Uihlein – Another defenseman with a good slapshot, Uihlein teamed with Hendrikson to form a very solid pair. She was able to see some time on special teams in addition to skating her regular shifts.
#9 Olivia Kilberg – Never afraid to go in the corners or dive for a loose puck, Kilberg was the right wing on Edina’s high-scoring second line. In addition to playing for the Hornets, she serves her school as a student trainer under head trainer Steve Tschida.
#10 Sophie Slattery – The Hornets’ second-line left wing has played on state-championship teams in two sports – hockey and tennis. She had a productive state tournament with a number of key plays and timely assists.
#11 Annie Kuehl – As Edina’s third-line center, Kuehl was one of the young players who made an impact on the championship season. She was a clever playmaker on a solid line with left wing Olivia Swaim and right wing Aliyah Lance.
#12 Lolita Fidler – An outstanding three-sport athlete in hockey, soccer and lacrosse, Fidler dominated during the state tourney, scoring four goals, including the game-winners in all three games. She finished her junior year with 54 points on 24 goals and 30 assists. In addition, she played a key role on the penalty kill.
#13 Grace Bowlby – The Hornets’ senior captain accomplished almost everything a high school player possibly could in her final season. She was first-team All-State, a Ms. Hockey finalist and a four-year All-Lake Conference player. Her skating and playmaking were instrumental in the Hornets’ drive to the state championship. Bowlby had 11 goals and 21 assists. She will play for the University of Wisconsin on scholarship next season.
#14 Kaitlin Enriquez – This Hornet is a part of a solid senior class that won the first state championship in Edina school history. She was able to contribute on defense in all three state-tournament victories.
#16 Emily Oden – The Hornets’ first-line left wing took a break from the high school season to help Team USA win the World Under-18 championship in the Czech Republic. It was Oden’s second season as a world champion, and of course, her first as a state high school champion. Despite missing a sequence of games, she led the Hornets in goals scored with 25. Her powerful slapshot makes opposing goalies flinch.
#17 Brooke Tucker – The talented junior was an ideal partner for defenseman Grace Bowlby. Whenever Bowlby rushed the puck up the ice, Tucker was there to cover in the defensive zone. Tucker showed outstanding playmaking skills with 20 assists.
#18 Evelyn Adams – During the regular season and section playoffs, the senior defenseman had only five points, but she came on strong in the state tourney with a pair of key assists. As a left defenseman, she was paired most often with Savanna Atol.
#19 Anna Klein – The Hornets’ first-line center was always around the puck, making plays for herself and for her teammates. A steady defender, Klein excelled in all three zones. She finished the season with 15 goals and 30 assists. Next season she will play hockey on scholarship for the University of Minnesota-Duluth.
#21 C.C. Bowlby – The younger sister of star defenseman Grace Bowlby is a top player in her own right as Edina’s first-line right wing. An outstanding playmaker, she was one of the Hornets playmaking stars with 22 assists in her sophomore year.
#22 Aliyah Lance – The Hornets’ third-line right wing played outstanding defense the entire year and finished with 13 points. She helped Edina’s third line hold its own as one of the most effective checking lines in the Lake Conference.
#23 Ellie Mahoney – A member of Edina’s senior class, Mahoney saw action as the 10th forward and filled in nicely up front when Emily Oden was away at the Under-18 World Championships. She finished the season with three goals.
#30 Ellie Strittmater – After playing on the JV team this year, the sophomore goalie joined the Hornet varsity for the section and state tournaments.
#35 Anna Goldstein – The Hornets’ remarkable senior goalie had five shutouts in the last six games of her senior season. Two of those shutouts, both by 4-0 scores, came in the state semifinals and finals against two of the state’s best teams – Eden Prairie and Blaine. Her season record was a stellar 22-1-1. Next season Goldstein will play collegiate hockey for Middlebury College.