Gallegos doubles as MVP
VAIL<You might say Edwards’ Hillary Gallegos spelled double trouble for opponents of the Vail Mountaineers girls’ hockey teams this season.Gallegos starred for both the U-15 and U-19 teams, and was recentlynamed most valuable player for both squads.Cited by her coaches and teammates as a leader and a mentor for many of the other skaters, Gallegos led both teams in scoring during the regular season. Including the state tournament, she netted 13 goals and seven assists for U-19 team, and 12 goals and five assists for U-15’s.As an assistant captain on both teams, Gallegos played both center and on the wing, and was one of just five girls who skated for both teams.”When she had a good game, the rest of the team also played well, and that, to me, is the definition of a most valuable player,” U-19 coach GaryDefina said. “Her hard work just willed the rest of the team.”The U-15’s finished 4-2 in league, 8-2-2 overall and took fourth in the state tournament. The U-19’s completed the regular season with a 5-1-2 mark in league play and a 12-7-5 record overall. They placed third in the state tournament.Hillary is the eldest daughter of local businessman Gerald Gallegos, the president of the Gallegos Corporation, a masonry and custom stone work business.”I’m so proud of Hillary and her accomplishments both on and off the ice,Gallegos said. “She’s worked very hard to become the talented hockey player that she is today.”U-15 coach Susanne Chardoul was no less effusive in her praise for Hillary Gallegos’ talent and leadership ability.”She knows the game, has excellent skills, and she works and works until she gets the puck in the net,” Chardoul said. “She reaches out to all the other girls and keeps everyone focused.”Gallegos was chosen as the U-15 MVP by a vote of the players. Coach Defina chose her as the MVP of the U-19’s. Gallegos chose to credit her family for her success in her favorite sport.”They were always there for me,” she said.The highlight of the Rocky Mountain Girls Hockey League season for theU-15’s, according to Chardoul, was the team’s midseason rout of archrival Aspen.”The whole team looks forward to that game more than any other,” added Chardoul.Gallegos concurred that the matchup with Aspen was the highlight of her season.”I scored a hat trick that game and they’re our biggest rivals, so it meant a lot,” she said.
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Jeff Shiffrin, with his wife, Eileen, made the Vail area their home decades ago, and together raised Mikaela and Taylor Shiffrin, who was a member of the two-time NCAA Champion University of Denver Ski Team.