Basalt senior Stella Scott invited to U17 national hockey camp in Minnesota
Stella Scott dreams of playing college hockey. Her best chance to make that happen could come next week in Minnesota.
“If I want to play college hockey, I have to put in my best at this camp,” Scott said. “I’m super excited. The camp I am going to, it’s where all the top DI schools go to. They watch us play for seven days. It’s a great place to show your skill and the building point to hopefully playing Division I.”
Scott, a Carbondale resident and senior-to-be at Basalt High School, was invited to participate in USA Hockey’s U17 women’s player development camp. Starting Saturday and running through July 20, the nation’s top female players in that age group will compete inside the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center in St. Cloud, where many are vying for the attention of the collegiate scouts.
Also on the line is a spot on Team USA’s U18 national team.
“It’s a fairly big deal for her age group,” Aspen Junior Hockey executive director Shaun Hathaway said. “They go through a district selection process and then a regional selection process and then they select these girls for the national camp. It’s really just an opportunity for the girls to go get some national exposure for colleges.”
Scott, still only 16, grew up playing with Aspen Junior Hockey. Her father, Peter Scott, was her mites coach and her grandfather, Tam Scott, was a past AJH president. So for Stella, becoming a hockey player was unavoidable.
“Everyone in the family plays hockey,” she said. “My dad made me start at 4 and we would go down to the Carbondale ice rink and skate all the time and I fell in love. I played soccer for a little bit, but hockey is definitely my sport.”
Scott isn’t unfamiliar with the level of competition she’ll see next week in Minnesota. Two years ago, she was invited to USA Hockey’s U15 national camp and this past season played with the Belle Tire AAA U16 club, which is based out of Detroit, Michigan.
“It was extremely scary. But it was so fun and I got to meet so many amazing girls that were committed to amazing schools already,” Scott said of the U15 camp two years ago. “I wanted to leave because the hockey here is good, but I knew I needed to go east, because that is where all the elite girls hockey is.”
Scott will again head east this winter when she moves to Stowe, Vermont, to attend the North American Hockey Academy. She’ll begin and end her school year going to Basalt High, but will be attending NAHA from October through March and playing hockey almost every weekend.
Between that and this week’s national camp in Minnesota, Scott is hoping the phone starts ringing soon with some college hockey coaches on the other end of the line.
“This camp has literally every school there that I want to go to. They watch everything. They watch your skills; they watch what you are like off the ice,” she said. “I’m excited. Since I’ve already gone once, I know how to act. I already know a bunch of people, and I’m really prepared, I feel like, compared to last time.”
A local kid got on the X Games Aspen podium on Sunday night, but it wasn’t the one most people expected. Even Jon Sallinen didn’t think he’d be taking home a medal.