Janesville forward Smekhnov makes NCAA D1 commitment
The Janesville Jets of the North American Hockey League (NAHL) are pleased to announce that forward Arsenii Smekhnov has committed to play NCAA Division 1 hockey for Long Island University.
Smekhnov, 19, just completed his second season of playing junior hockey, which has been spent between the NAHL and USHL.
The 6’1/194 lbs. native of Kirov, Russia, split the 2019-20 between the Janesville Jets and the Youngstown Phantoms and Fargo Force in the USHL.
Smekhnov joined the Jets at the trading deadline and appeared in 11 games, recording six points (1 goal, 5 assists). Smekhnov scored his first career NAHL goal on February 7th in just his second NAHL game.
“He fit in very well with his hockey IQ. He’s very talented with the puck, he can skate and he can make plays. When you come to this NAHL it’s all about competing without the puck and learning how to get the puck, and he did that,” said former Jets head coach Corey Leivermann. “He came in and you saw the point production right away for him. It was nice for him to get some points, but he also just plays the game the right way.”
Smekhnov began the season with the Youngstown Phantoms in the USHL, but was traded later in the season to the Fargo Force before arriving in Janesville.
In 86 career USHL games, Smekhnov recorded 13 points.
Prior to playing junior hockey, Smekhnov spent a year at the Salisbury School and played two seasons for the Colorado Evolution.