LEWISTON – From skating on a flooded backyard rink, to watching Bowdoin College play at Dayton Arena, to serving as Brunswick’s captain on the No. 1 seed in the playoffs, Kit Smith has been around and played a lot of hockey.

In Guatemala last summer, Smith also got to see life from another perspective.

He traveled to the Central American country with Safe Passage, a group founded by the late Hanley Denning to help ensure educational opportunities for Guatemalan children living in poverty.

The Class A Hockey Coaches’ Association rewarded Smith’s contributions to the community, academics and hockey Sunday, bestowing upon him the Travis Roy Award, given each year to the best senior in Class A who also excels in the classroom and in the community.

“This award says a lot, not just about me as an individual, but about how far the team has come,” Smith said. “Four years ago we were around .500, we were losing to St. Dom’s like, 15-0. Now, we’re playing with St. Dom’s and Falmouth in 1-1 games. It says a lot about our team.”

Established in 1996, the award is named for former North Yarmouth Academy, Tabor Academy and Boston University player, who was paralyzed 11 seconds into his first shift with Boston University in 1995.

In his speech to the gathered crowd of nearly 500 at the Ramada Inn and Conference Center, Smith equated Roy’s work in motivating and helping people since his accident to Denning’s work in Guatemala, which also met with tragedy this year when she was killed in a car accident in January.

“Both faced a similar situation,” Smith said. “Hanley saw great suffering among the people who lived in poverty at the dump, just as Travis saw the suffering of those disabled people who face the challenges of living in a wheelchair. Both Travis and Hanley set goals and worked to achieve them by sharing their passion for life with those around them.”

On the ice, Smith was every bit as inspirational, aside from his 25 goals and 16 assists in 21 games through the regular season.

“A lot of people here now realize how special Kit Smith is,” Brunswick coach and Lewiston resident Dave Boucher said. “He’s a very intelligent individual. He was able to win big games for us.”

Smith beat out James Tolan of Falmouth and Brent Mayo of Scarborough for this year’s award.

Boucher had another reason to smile Sunday. His brother, long-time St. Dom’s head coach and athletic director Bob Boucher, was honored with a lifetime achievement award, along with Paul Evans, now an assistant coach at the University of Southern Maine.

“He’s done so much for high school hockey,” Dave Boucher said. “He was one of the first coaches to push for the tier system so that all schools can play competitive hockey. It wasn’t just about winning state championships and St. Dom’s for him, it was about keeping kids in Maine high school hockey.”

“It was always fun, a lot of fun,” Bob Boucher said. “A lot of these coaches here tonight, I had great rivalries with. Then there’s the other half that makes you feel old, seeing some of the coaches here that I had as players or coached against as players.”

The Class A Coaches’ Association also announced their All-State teams Sunday.

The first team included local players Justin Nadeau, Jordan Bourgoin and Matt Letourneau of Lewiston, Corey LaRue and Billy Brewster of Edward Little and Alex Tyburski of St. Dom’s.

Seth Champagne (EL), Shawn Hird (EL), Jonathan Roy (Lewiston), Joe Theriault (St. Dom’s) and Sheldon Roy (St. Dom’s) made the second team, and Corey Binette of Edward Little, Ian Doucette of Lewiston and Jeff Lewandowski of St. Dom’s received honorable mention awards.

In Tier III, Joey Davie and Cory Cormier of Gray-New Gloucester/Poland received mention.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.