Girls’ ice hockey team first of its kind in Knoxville

Smoky Mountain Lady Wild is Knoxville’s first ever elite girls ice hockey squad.
Smoky Mountain Lady Wild is Knoxville’s first ever elite girls ice hockey squad.
Published: Aug. 14, 2023 at 7:56 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Fall means football season is here, but in Farragut, another playing surface is ready.

The Smoky Mountain Lady Wild 10 and under team are the first elite girls’ ice hockey squad to ever call Knoxville home.

“We’ve had girls come through this program,” said Lady Wild Coach Jeff Monckton. “But we’ve never had a path forward for them to stay here at home.”

A team of 20 girls makes up the Lady Wild roster. Their motivation for playing varies.

“I like skating hard!” exclaims Reagan.

“What made me start hockey is the movie ‘The Mighty Ducks,’” said Maddie.

Others took up the game out of sheer curiosity.

“There was a group ice skating and there was a hockey game after, and I asked my Mom if we could watch and she said sure,” said Emma. “Then I asked ‘can I play this sport?’ and she said ‘I don’t care!’”

No matter the motivation, one they hit the ice, the goal for each player remains the same.

“It’s about fun, getting better, and enjoying the game,” said Monckton.

Having home ice means no more weekend trips across the nation, which lifts a major burden off the shoulders’ of parents.

“We don’t have to travel to Ohio, or Atlanta,” said Coach Sam Haase. “We love traveling, but we have enough interest here that we love having home ice.”

Those interested in signing their child up for youth hockey can visit the Cool Sports website.

“We have equipment ready for kids to borrow,” said Haase. “We have a lot of support, a lot of awesome coaches here, whether they’re parents or not, a lot of people just want to get out on the ice and promote the sport.”