Three TPH Alumni Selected in the 2022 NHL Draft
It’s why you train relentlessly and outwork your opponents.
It’s the opportunity to accomplish a lifelong goal and secure a life-changing opportunity.
It’s a moment that every young hockey player dreams about.
It’s the NHL Draft.
“We’re incredibly excited for these young men as they take the next step in their journey with their selections in the 2022 NHL Draft,” said Alan Keeso, CEO of Total Package Hockey. “Team TPH cheered them on in the lead-up and throughout this special moment, while also pausing to appreciate the testament these advancements are to our program, process, and people.”
The hockey journeys of these three impact players included competition at the AAA level and advancement to USA Hockey National Team Development Program (USNTDP). Along the way, they also developed in their academics, fitness, hockey, and as people at TPH Academy, each entering the program intending to make it to the highest level in the game. Their pursuits required long days of training, traveling, studying, and competing, which ultimately developed them into the self-starting, well-rounded, and resilient athletes they are today.
The 2022 NHL Draft was the biggest moment of their careers yet. Here’s how it went:
Cutter Gauthier was the first TPH alumni taken off the board, as the Philadelphia Flyers selected him with the 5th overall pick. At 6-foot-2 and 200-pounds, the USNTDP forward was highly touted for his size, strength, and ability to fend off attackers and create turnovers in the offensive zone. The Boston College commit put up 28 points in 22 USHL games with the USNTDP juniors and many expect him to light it up for years to come.
His USNTDP teammate and fellow TPH Detroit Alumni, Rutger McGroarty was taken just a few picks later, as the Winnipeg Jets selected him with the 14th overall pick. After putting up 35 goals and 34 assists in 54 games with the USANDTP U18s, followed by 15 goals and 18 assists in just 25 USHL games, the 6-foot-1, 204-pound forward has proven himself as an elite goal scorer.
Lane Hutson was taken with the 62nd overall pick by the Montreal Canadiens. Hutson was described as being a ‘unicorn’ by USNTDP U18 coach, Nick Fohr, who noted Hutson’s well-rounded skill set and his ability to make defensive plays and generate on offense. Hutson led all USNTDP defensemen with 10 goals and 53 assists in 60 games.
We’re incredibly proud of this year’s TPH-eligible draft class and we look forward to watching this next generation of impact players on their journeys in and beyond the game.
Discover all of the ways that TPH Academy can help you achieve your goals and start your path with us here.
Detroit High School Sports Awards Honors Rick Gadwa
Rick Gadwa is Honored as 2022 John Herrington Coach of the Year Award
As a Michigan native, Rick Gadwa has deep roots in the Detroit community. Not only is he the current Manager of Operations & Programming at the TPH Detroit location, but he also developed and led the Michigan Hockey Advancement, a preseason education and exposure program designed to help the best high school hockey players compete against other top programs across the county. You’ll also find Rick behind the bench of the Hartland High School varsity boys hockey team as their head coach.
Rick creates traditions of excellence in each area of his life. That is probably why he led the Harland High School hockey team to their third state championship this past season. His passion and involvement with the athletes in the community go far beyond his job with the high school program. Because of the time and energy he pours into helping each player he interacts with reach their goals and take their talent to the next level, Rick has been honored as the Michigan High School Coach of the Year for all high school sports in the state of Michigan.
Rick attributes who he has become as a coach to the lessons he learned from his own experiences playing sports.
“My previous coaches taught me that mistakes are going to happen, but the coaches who are ultimately successful don’t let those mistakes define them. I am grateful for the incredible hockey minds I get to be around daily, absorbing their philosophies, and continuing to be a student of the game. This has allowed me to grow as a coach. I still make mistakes and am still growing, but I’ll continue to stay my course and surround myself with great people.” says Coach Gadwa.
We have seen first-hand how dedicated Rick is to the athletes he mentors and coaches and know this honor is well-deserved. “Rick does an amazing job with the [Hartland] program and works tirelessly to help players reach their goals and advance to the next level, not just for his Hartland program, but also at the Center of Excellence in Detroit and through his MHA program with TPH Detroit,” said Dave Sellin, TPH Detroit’s Coordinator of Operations & Programming. Coach Sellin continued “So, a well-deserved honor for a great coach and even better guy.”
“I’m extremely thankful to be recognized for the John Herrington Coach of the Year Award. Even though this award is given to one person, it’s a team award to me. I have the very best assistant coaches in the state. David Sellin, Kevin Carlile, and Tom McCarthy help so much in what we do day in and day out as a program. Without them, our team would not be where we are today. I also have a great support system within our athletic department, specifically our Athletic Director, JD Wheeler, and Athletic Secretary, Liz Streight. They do so much behind the scenes. Lastly, Coach of the Year Awards are won because of the players. This year, we had a very special group that knew how to lead, execute, and handle everything that was thrown their way. I’m very grateful for our army of coaches, staff, and players. This award is theirs, not just mine.”
Rick is a vital part of TPH Detroit. His passion and drive are what make him an incredible leader and coach. We are so proud of Rick and the characteristics that come with the honor of Coach of the Year are something he exudes through his work at TPH, in his coaching, and throughout the management of the Michigan Hockey Advancement. We are grateful to have him on our team!
If you are a Michigan High School Hockey player who wants more information on Michigan Hockey Advancement and would like to be a part of the incredible program Coach Gadwa developed, register for their upcoming tryouts: Grand Rapids | Gaylord | Farmington Hills
If you are an AAA Hockey player who wants to take your skills to the next level, learn more about TPH Detroit.
Detroit’s Norris Featured on Octopuses Podcast
CoE Alumni Rutger McGroarty Heralded as Elite NHL Prospect
Rutger McGroarty’s name is highlighted, underlined, bolded, and circled in red pen by NHL scouts across the country. Long before he was heralded as one of the top Americans eligible in this year’s NHL draft class, Rutger was a student athlete at the Detroit Center of Excellence (CoE). With the 2022 NHL Draft just six months away, let’s take a look at how Rutger made a name for himself.
During his time as a student athlete at CoE, Rutger was lighting the bantam hockey scene on fire. In 2017 and 2018, he tallied 101 points in just 37 games, leading the ‘04 Honeybaked squad to back-to-back Michigan state titles. Rutger began to garner national attention during his U15 season when he linked up with the Oakland Jr. Grizzlies, where he put up an astonishing 82 goals and 78 assists in just 63 games.
Rutger credits his time at CoE for his on-ice success. “CoE had such a big impact on my hockey game,” he stated. “Skating every day with a bunch of high-end hockey players who all want to be successful in the game – it’s hard not to get better when you’re competing with and against a bunch of kids like that.” His incredible work ethic combined with his raw hockey ability made Rutger a stand out talent from an early age.
Flash forward to 2021, and Rutger is beginning to dominate on an international level. He racked up 35 points in 34 games with USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program (NTDP U17 squad). After graduating to the U18 team, he put up similar numbers, tallying 16 points in 27 games. His consistent play making abilities with the NTDP earned him a roster spot with Team USA at the 2021 IIHF World Under-18 Championship this past spring.
So what’s next for Rutger? Despite being scooped up by the Ontario Hockey League’s Soo Greyhounds, Rutger plans to chase his boyhood dream of winning an NCAA Division I Championship with the Michigan Wolverines. For a young prospect, the number of options and pathways can seem daunting and sometimes overwhelming. The CoE staff is well versed in navigating the nuances of college and junior hockey, and are more than prepared to help student athletes make the decision that’s best for them.
“The entire TPH family is extremely proud of Rutger’s success,” said Nathan Bowen, CEO of Total Package Hockey. “He comes from an incredible hockey family and was raised to be an amazing person. His development is a testament to what any CoE student-athlete is capable of achieving, and we can’t wait to see what the next step of his career looks like.”
Interested in maximizing your student athlete’s potential? Join us Virtual Open House event on January 10th to learn the ins and outs of our NCAA-accredited blended learning program and sport-specific training. Find out if our model is right for your student-athlete and reserve a seat at one of 16 CoE locations across the country for the 2022/2023 academic year.
Click here to register!
Alan Keeso Named CEO as TPH Looks to Next 20 Years
(Nashville, TN – December 15, 2021) – TPH is excited to announce Alan Keeso as its new Chief Executive Officer, effective January 1, 2022. Having served as Strategic Advisor to TPH over the past 5 years, Keeso brings in-depth knowledge of TPH and its Center of Excellence (CoE) academy model, its team members, and culture.
“We’re so excited to have Al lead our team going into our next 20 years at TPH,” said TPH founder Nathan Bowen, who will move out of the CEO role and into the Chairman role, remaining heavily active in TPH. “Having celebrated TPH turning 20 years old this year, we are absolutely pumped about what’s to come as we strive to lead the world in positively impacting the lives of student-athletes. Al is the leader to help us scale that impact.”
In addition to consulting for TPH in recent years, Keeso has helped dozens of small and medium-sized businesses grow for over a decade as a management consultant, independently, as well as through Grant Thornton and BDC. When asked early in 2021 by Bowen and his Investing Partner Taso Sofikitis to work more closely with TPH, Keeso decided to make the move with his family to Nashville.
“TPH to its core is a purpose-driven organization, with an outstanding team of committed professionals,” said Keeso. “It’s an honor to have this kind of confidence from Nathan and Taso to take TPH to new heights, and the responsibility that comes with the CEO role to the TPH team and our student-athletes is something I take very seriously. We’re a team that’s poised for growth through our Center of Excellence Study/Train/Play academy model, association management, camps and clinics, The Prospect Exchange, prospects teams, and events, now featuring Champions League Hockey in partnership with World Hockey Group. All of these efforts and their growth will enable us to positively impact the lives of a greater number of student-athletes, not only at our current locations, but also at many new locations to come. The future is bright at TPH.”
Keeso’s own journey as a student-athlete, and ensuing career, lend perspective to what Bowen believes will continue to differentiate TPH to prospective partners as well as families weighing the incredibly important decision on where to have their children develop as students, athletes, and people.
“Al has not only been an aspiring elite student-athlete, who reached levels in hockey that many TPH student-athletes are working towards daily, but he also exemplifies to our families what the bigger picture can be when lessons learned from sports are applied beyond the game,” said Bowen. “That’s what TPH is all about, and that’s what we feel differentiates us; we prepare our student-athletes not only for the next level in their sport, but also mentor them on habits that will help them experience wild success on the ultimate journey – life. With Al’s leadership, that differentiator will only get stronger. He has lived the ups and downs the game can throw at you and is an incredible role model for young aspiring student-athletes, because he never quit and he has used those tough times as motivation and lessons learned to prepare for the next challenge in life and hit it head on in pursuit of the next success.”
In addition to a successful business career, Keeso has earned two master’s degrees – an MBA and an MSc in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management – from the University of Oxford. At Oxford, he also published a working paper, took to the TEDx stage, and was goaltender for the university’s historic ice hockey team, becoming the only men’s player in the club’s history to have earned an Extraordinary Full Blue, the highest honor in sports at Oxford. Keeso also served as an infantry officer in the armed forces reserves and ran in a federal election.
A native of Listowel, Ontario, Keeso played hockey in his hometown before joining the Huron-Perth Lakers AAA organization and continuing on to Jr hockey with the Listowel Cyclones, Strathroy Rockets, and Sarnia Blast of the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League (GOHL). He then went to Boston to study at Wentworth Institute of Technology, where he was a goaltender for the varsity NCAA Division III hockey team and graduated with a BSc in Technology Management with honors.
“Having grown up in the game of hockey, I understand the opportunities for growth that youth sports provide for young people, on and off the ice, field, and court,” said Keeso. “Team members at TPH are deeply committed to the holistic development of student-athletes, knowing that the skills and habits learned extend well beyond the game to many other arenas of life. As a result of Nathan’s leadership and an all-star team of people, we have a great foundation in place as we head into ‘The Next 20’ at TPH.”
If you are interested in learning more about our #StudyTrainPlay model at the TPH Center of Excellence, Alan and other key members of our team will be participating in a Nationwide Virtual Open House on January 10th at 8:00 PM EST. Register for free here!
Michigan Native Leads the Pack
Greg Wolfe Named Head of Hockey at TPH Detroit
Total Package Hockey (TPH) is proud to announce the promotion of Michigan native, Greg Wolfe, to Head of Hockey at TPH Detroit. The program has seen incredible progress with Greg working as a Player Development Coach & Mentor during the last two years. His hard work and dedication have had a massive impact on the day to day lives of student athletes, allowing Greg to surge through the TPH Detroit depth chart.
So who exactly is Greg Wolfe? We’re glad you asked. Take a knee, we’ll give you the rundown.
Greg grew up in Canton, Michigan, where he won three state championships with the Honeybaked Tier 1 Program. He played two seasons in the USHL with the Chicago Steel and Omaha Lancers before taking his talents to East Lansing, where he played four seasons of NCAA hockey with the Michigan State Spartans. He was captain of the team for his final two years at State, when he won the Big Ten Medal of Honor and the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award. Following his college career, he made his professional debut in 2014 with the Reading Royals of the ECHL, and was named an ECHL All-Star in the 2016-17 and 2018-19 seasons.
So yeah…you could say he’s got a pretty solid Michigan hockey pedigree.
“I’m humbled and excited to take on this new position as Head of Hockey with TPH Detroit,” says Greg. “It’s a great opportunity for me to further develop the TPH Hockey Development Model for our student-athletes in Detroit and throughout TPH as a whole.” Greg would go on to add how excited he is to get to work in his new role, and credits his staff for their hard work in providing the highest level of training and mentorship to TPH players.
Director of TPH Detroit, Dwayne Norris, says Greg’s pending success was imminent from very early on. “Having Greg on the team as a Player Development Coach & Mentor has given us front row seats to observe his passion, leadership, and forward-thinking for the game of hockey,” says Dwayne. “He’s made a tremendous impact on the journeys of our student-athletes as they strive towards excellence. Please join me in congratulating Coach Wolfe on his promotion, it is extremely well deserved.”
Interested in training with Greg Wolfe and the team at TPH Detroit? Click here to learn more about our program.
Total Package Hockey was founded in 2001 and began operations in 2004 in Ontario, Canada. TPH seeks to become the world leader in positively impacting the lives of student-athletes, all ages and skill level, through sport. TPH platforms include association management, elite prospects programs, tournaments and showcases, camps and clinics, and its hallmark Center of Excellence academy model, serving over 10,000 student-athletes annually throughout 16 U.S. based divisions. TPH prides itself on taking a holistic approach, one that emphasizes the development of the individual in four ways:
- as a player within a team setting
- as an athlete, dedicated to reaching their physical potential
- as a student, working to achieve their academic goals
- as a person, striving to win the ultimate game, and that’s the game of life.
Forgione and Fleming Make the Jump to the Junior Level
Former AAA and COE teammates part ways to compete in the OHL and USHL
The path forward from the youth levels of hockey is a forked road with multiple options for leagues and several options for teams. Understanding these options and making the right decision for your future can be daunting is only half the battle; the other half comes down to coaches and teams. This season two TPH Detroit student-athletes, P.J. Forgione and Landon Fleming, approached the fork in the road and picked their path onto the junior hockey level.
In September, P.J. inked his contract with the Saginaw Spirit of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL), while Landon announced his commitment to play for the Madison Capitols of the United States Hockey League (USHL). TPH Detroit is proud of the success of these two former student-athletes and views their accomplishments as a testament to the program’s ability to produce high-performing talent.
The two defensemen were classmates at the Center of Excellence (CoE) during the 2020-21 school year, but their friendship goes back much further than that. Dwayne Norris, the Detroit CoE actually coached the two earlier in their careers when they played for the Oakland Jr. Grizzlies. Norris says their potential was clear from the very beginning and that he is extremely proud to have watched the two athletes grow into leaders both on and off the ice.
“I know I speak for the entire TPH organization when I say that we couldn’t be more excited for Forgione. and his new opportunity with Saginaw,” says TPH Player Development Coach & Mentor, Greg Wolfe. “P.J. is a player of high character and work ethic. He shows up at the rink every day, ready to give 100%. There is no doubt P.J. will be an asset for Saginaw, and I can’t wait to see how he continues to develop at the next level.” P.J. has played in all three of the Spirit’s preseason games so far, and netted his first goal of the 2021 preseason on September 18th.
“Landon is a player that improved his focus and attention to detail throughout last year, both on and off the ice. We are ecstatic to see that tireless work ethic payoff as he advances to play in Madison of the USHL this season,” says Dwayne Norris, the Director & Head of Hockey at the TPH Center of Excellence in Detroit. Landon has seen ice time in each of his preseason games with the Capitols, who are ranked second in the USHL Eastern Conference and boast a 3-1 preseason record.
These two young men have had a relatively similar background in training and youth organizations, and have taken the jump to the top junior leagues in both Canada and the United States. TPH wishes them the best in their upcoming seasons and moving forward through life. To learn more about the TPH CoE model, and how it can help student-athletes reach their full potential in academics and athletics, please visit our website.
Total Package Hockey was founded in 2001 and began operations in 2004 in Ontario, Canada. TPH seeks to become the world leader in positively impacting the lives of student-athletes, all ages and skill levels through sports. TPH platforms include association management, elite prospects programs, tournaments and showcases, camps and clinics, and its hallmark Center of Excellence academy model, serving over 10,000 student-athletes annually throughout 16 U.S.-based divisions. TPH prides itself on taking a holistic approach, one that emphasizes the development of the individual in four ways:
- As a player within a team setting
- As an athlete, dedicated to reaching their physical potential
- As a student, working to achieve their academic goals
- As a person striving to win the ultimate game, and that’s the game of life
Dwayne Norris, a native of St. John’s, Newfoundland, is the Director of Hockey-Operation at the TPH Center of Excellence in Detroit. Norris played four seasons at Michigan State University from 1988-1992. While in college, he also played for Team Canada at the U20 World Junior Championships in 1990. Norris was selected by the Quebec Nordiques in the 7th round of the 1990 NHL draft. He made his professional debut in 1992 with the Halifax Citadels of the AHL. Norris’ NHL debut came in the next season with the Québec Nordiques. His professional career then continued on through the 2007 season. Personally, Norris is married to wife Traci and has three sons- Cole, a sophomore at Ferris State, Josh, who was also selected by San Jose in the first round of the 2017 NHL draft and is currently a part of the Ottawa Senators organization, and Dalton, a U18 ‘AAA’ player who attends the Center of Excellence.
Allison Anargyros, a Michigan native, is the Director of Academics at the TPH Center of Excellence in Detroit. Anargyros has a deep background in athletics in education. Anargyros graduated with a BS in Psychology from Grand Valley State University and a Masters degree in Higher Education from the University of Louisville. While at Louisville, she served as a Graduate Assistant at Louisville in the Athletic Department where she gained experience as an Academic Adviser for student-athletes.
During college, she taught technology classes as a parent engagement coordinator for Grand Rapids Public Schools. She also worked in the athletic departments while at the University of Louisville and then at Indiana University.
Rick Gadwa, a native of Brighton, Michigan, is the Manager of Hockey Operations & Programming at the TPH Center of Excellence in Detroit. He graduated from Hartland High School, where he currently coaches the varsity boys hockey team. Gadwa is a graduate of Davenport University where he played three years of college hockey. He then went on to play semi-professional hockey for the Battle Creek Revolution in the AAHL. The father of three still resides in Brighton, Michigan.