On the second-to-last day of the NWHL’s restricted free agency period the Boston Pride have signed their fifth player for the upcoming 2017-18 season.
Today the Pride agreed to terms skilled forward Jordan Smelker. The 2017-18 season will be Smelker’s third with Boston. Smelker joins Emily Field, Kathyrn Tomaselli, Lexi Bender and Micaela Levine on the Pride’s slowly growing roster.
Ooh, I found one more ridic goal, Jordan Smelker, pride of Alaska, terror of goalies everywhere. pic.twitter.com/cyDWX7YWN8— Carolyn Wilke (@Classlicity) January 7, 2017
“I love this team and this league, but the biggest motivator in coming back for a third season is getting the Isobel Cup back to Boston,” Smelker shared in the league’s press release.
The Alaskan-born Smelker scored seven points in 15 games last season for the Pride. It was a significant step down from the 19 points she had in the league’s inaugural season in 17 games. Hilary Knight’s injury had a lot to do with Smelker’s drop in production, as did the change in her role brought about by the additions of Alex Carpenter and Meghan Duggan.
Smelker is a big signing for the Pride. Her ability to play in all three zones and scoring touch is something that Boston will need next season.
The restricted free agency period wraps up tomorrow at midnight. Boston and Connecticut each have five players signed, the Riveters have seven signed and the Beauts have yet to make a move.