TPH Center of Excellence Hosts 1st Annual Colorado Winter Classic
Over 70 student-athletes from TPH Center of Excellence Denver and Superior took to the pond this past January to compete in the first annual TPH Colorado Winter Classic. The tournament was a joint venture between the two Center of Excellence locations and was developed to allow TPH student-athletes to experience the game of hockey how it was meant to be played: outside.
With fun in mind, the TPH Winter Classic allowed the student-athletes to take what they have already learned and apply it to a free flowing version of the game. Memories were forged that will last a lifetime as the student-athletes skated around the frozen surface of Lake Evergreen. As Lester Patrick stated in 1950, “The foundation of hockey isn’t really hockey at all. It’s shinny, a wild melee of kids batting a puck around, with no rules, no organization.”
But this was no ordinary game of shinny. There was no blindfolded stick shuffling, no harsh ice conditions, and no rushing to get home before the streetlights came on. This was a flawlessly executed round-robin style tournament that took place on 15 of the most well manicured mini rinks that Colorado had to offer.
In order to get the full pond hockey experience, student-athletes were challenged to play with teammates they had never met before. Teams were based on age, and each roster featured a mix of student-athletes from both Denver and Superior. Over the course of the day, family members and Center of Excellence staff cheered as a handful of NCAA Division 1 commits came to play with each team competing in 6 games.
The priority of the TPH Colorado Winter Classic was focused on having fun and providing a unique experience for everyone in attendance. “This was an excellent opportunity to bring the TPH family and the Colorado hockey families together,” mentioned Jordan Pietrus, Executive Director of TPH Colorado. “This was all about having some unstructured fun, getting exercise, and enjoying the sunshine and fresh air. We’re thrilled to have been able to bring the game back to its roots and host this amazing tournament for our student-athletes.”
Take the next step and register for the upcoming National Virtual Open House; discovering new levels of potential for your student-athlete at a Center of Excellence near you!
How relocating elevated Rylee’s game.
Growing up in a small town in Idaho, Rylee Tanner just didn’t have enough options to take her game to the next level. In a town with just over 3,000 people, she was limited to the house league, AA, or high school boys’ hockey. She knew that if she wanted to accomplish her goals of playing college hockey, she had to make a change.
That’s why at age 17, she packed her bags and pursued a one-of-a-kind opportunity at the Center of Excellence (CoE) in Superior, Colorado. Enrolling at CoE was the perfect fit for her goals, as it allowed her to focus on her education while traveling the country with Team Colorado’s 19U AAA squad.
CoE’s unique blended learning model has already proven to be successful for Rylee on and off the ice. “The CoE model has impacted both my learning and my playing tremendously,” she stated. “Being able to work with other students in the classroom, stand up and move around, and exercise before I do my work helps me focus and be more successful as a student. I have been getting stronger on the ice due to the work we do off of the ice, and we work on the basics every day which helps me be able to execute the basics at a practice”.
When Rylee arrived on campus, she had several goals in mind. She wanted to improve academically, translate classroom lessons into on-ice performance, and learn how to make quicker decisions during games. Not only did she accomplish these goals, but she also manifested her childhood dream of playing college hockey. In the Fall of 2021, Rylee committed to play NCAA DIII hockey at Finlandia University in Hancock, Michigan.
Rylee has nothing but positive things to say about the staff at CoE’s Superior location. “Matt Doman, Director of Hockey Operations, has done more than words can describe. I’d also like to give a shout-out to Coach Quailer for being patient and helping me improve my skills in the skills room, and a big thanks to Annie Doman, Head of Academics, for always helping me stay on pace in school, and communicating with my teachers”. Making the decision to leave her friends and family in Idaho wasn’t easy, but the Superior team worked closely with Rylee and her family in order to ensure that the move was as easy as possible. After just 1 year, Rylee has already forged long-lasting relationships with her teammates and classmates.
Ready to take the next step in your game? Make the right move by beginning here with the TPH Center of Excellence!
(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!
The Western Hockey League is conducting their 2021 WHL U.S. Priority Draft and 2021 WHL Prospects Draft on December 8th & 9th respectively. You can follow all the action at WHL.ca/draft.
Three Total Package Hockey/Center Of Excellence student-athletes had their names called in the online draft. Nicholas Christianson was drafted 3rd overall by the Winnipeg ICE, Kolby Gapter was drafted 25th by the Medicine Hat Tigers & Tyler Atchison was selected 28th by the Edmonton Oil Kings.
Christianson, from Upland, CA is a member of the Center of Excellence Program in Chicago and plays for the Windy City Storm 15’s. This 5’11” Center is a prolific offensive player that competes with fierceness.
Atchison, a teammate of Christianson’s with the Windy City Storm 15’s and fellow student-athlete at TPH/CoE in Chicago, is a right-handed forward that also has a knack for finding the back of the net.
“We are very happy for Nick and Tyler. This is a testament to the commitment they make every day to challenge themselves at TPH Chicago. These young men are in the early stages of very bright careers.” says, Rob Rassey, Director & Head of Hockey, TPH Chicago.
Kolby Gapter, a two-year student-athlete at the Center of Excellence in Superior Colorado was drafted 25th overall to the Medicine Hat Tigers. This blueliner defenseman has great size, standing at 6’0, and continues to improve day after day. “Kolby has been with TPH for two years. He serves as a student ambassador for us this year because of his outstanding commitment to excellence. Kolby’s character, attitude, and effort in all aspects of his development are what make him such a special person. We are proud to have Kolby as a part of our TPH family!” says Matt Doman, Director & Head of Hockey, TPH Superior.
“The TPH/Center of Excellence family is extremely proud of our boys and will continue to support their growth both on and off the ice.” says, Nathan Bowen, CEO.
You can find a campus near you and/or attend our upcoming National Virtual Open House on January 10 at 8 PM to see if our unique approach to blended learning and sports-specific training is right for your aspiring student-athlete.
A graduate of Brown University with an MBA in International Business from Coventry University, Pietrus has no shortage of achievements including being named to the ECAC All-Academic team, voted a finalist for the Ivy League Student-Athlete of the Year, awarded NCAA Hockey Humanitarian Finalist, and awarded the 2010 NCAA Derek Hines Unsung Hero Award. While competing for Coventry in the EIHL and pursuing his MBA, Pietrus served as a lecturer in Undergraduate and Masters levels courses at Coventry University.
After wrapping up a nine-year professional playing career that in ECHL (South Carolina, Trenton and Elmira) and overseas (England, Poland and Denmark), Pietrus led the charge inlaunching the first TPH Center of Excellence west of the Mississippi River. After one year at our Denver location Pietrus has stepped up to help lead all of our Colorado locations. The Winnipeg native has now made Colorado his home with his wife and daughter.
TPH Superior is excited to announce that Matt Doman will be its Director of Hockey – Operations for the inaugural 2020-21 Center of Excellence school year. In Doman, TPH brings on board someone with a fantastic blend of playing, coaching, and business experience.
Drafted by the Calgary Flames in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft, Doman brings experience from all levels of the game. He’s an alumnus of the United States National Team Development Program, USHL (Dubuque Fighting Saints), Wisconsin Badgers, East Coast Hockey League, and the American Hockey League. The University Wisconsin graduate (2005, BA Communications) also spent the past ten years coaching Minnesota high school hockey.
“Matt’s resume speaks for itself. Matt’s playing career, coupled with his coaching background, and more importantly his desire to mentor the next generation, make him the perfect fit for this role in leading our TPH Superior location” states Jordan Pietrus, TPH Colorado Executive Director. “What separates Matt, is how he has shown his ability to effectively translate his playing career into the youth coaching world on multiple levels. He knows what it takes to climb the hockey ladder. Matt has done it as a player and has coached players individually but also in a team setting. Matt comes highly recommended and the more we talk, the more I realize how much of a quality man he is. I believe Matt is the absolute right man to lead us in Superior and we are thrilled to have him join our team here in Colorado.”
Prior to joining TPH, Doman spent the past four years in the financial advising world, owned and operated two hockey development businesses, and served as the Director of Player Development for the Milwaukee Junior Admirals. Doman comes to lead TPH Superior with his wife (Annie) and their three boys Cashton, Tucker and Hank and is excited to become immersed in the Superior community.
“What Derek Robinson and his team have built at the Sport Stable is amazing and I can’t wait to add a new element to the diverse opportunities already available at the Stable,” said Doman. “Coaching and teaching have been passions of mine for a long time and I am honored to be able to provide my guidance and leadership to the student-athletes of TPH Superior. My family cannot wait to get to Colorado… my boys especially can’t wait to get on the ice at the Stable! I am so excited to join the TPH team and look forward to the many exciting challenges ahead.”
RoughRider Executive Sports Director, Derek Robinson, also boasted about the selection of Doman as the newly appointed leader. “From the beginning, we felt it was very important to find someone of not only a high quality playing and coaching background, but more importantly, someone of extremely high character. We believe we found exactly that type of leader in Matt and we think he’s going to be an invaluable addition and resource to our athletes at the Sport Stable.”
TPH Superior is set to embark on its inaugural year. There is a limited number of seats left, so do not miss your chance to be a part of the group that sets the standard for years to come.
Do you want to know what a day in the life of a Center of Excellence student not only looks like but what it actually feels like? Come join us for TPH Day and find out! TPH Day is a completely FREE event that will allow families and players to hear presentations on the academics and CoE model as well as participate in an on-ice TPH skills practice with Matt Doman! We will also provide a complimentary meal at the end of the day! Come join us! Click here to RSVP.
ENGLEWOOD, CO – TPH Colorado is thrilled to announce that Synapse PT will be the official Physical Therapy provider for TPH students in both Denver and Superior locations for the upcoming 2020-21 school year. In Synapse, TPH student athletes and families will have a professional and trusted organization that they can lean on for all their bumps, bruises, and rehabilitation needs.
“We could not be more excited to have the opportunity to have the team at Synapse PT available as a resource to our student-athletes throughout the year at both our Denver and Superior locations.” said TPH Colorado Director, Jordan Pietrus. “Injuries, bumps, and bruises are all apart of sport, so to be able to have our students receive professional help and advice in navigating how to handle these and recover is a huge benefit. TPH is constantly looking for ways to improve our program and provide our student-athletes with every advantage possible. We believe Synapse PT is a great resource for our students, athletes and families, and that Synapse is truly a great piece to add to our program!”
Synapse PT will offer all TPH Students complementary Injury Triage Services on site in Superior and at a pop-up clinic in Denver where Synapse PT will be on site for TPH students. TPH students will also receive FMS (Functional Movement Screening) screenings with corrective exercises delivered through TPH’s training app. TPH will lean on the extensive experience of Mike Keating, his work with USA Rugby and the Chicago Blackhawks, and Synapse’s team of fully qualified and professional staff for things like additional education sessions and even neurocognitive testing. With clinics located at the Promenade Ice Centre in Westminster and the Sport Stable in Superior, Synapse is your hometown physical therapy partner.
“It is part of our core belief at Synapse PT that a healthy student and athlete is a better student and athlete.” said Keating. “We love TPH’s Center of Excellence model, combining high performing academics and athletics together, and believe that we offer a missing piece to the player welfare to these student-athletes. We are really looking forward to being able to help the high performing students at TPH stay healthy, so they can achieve their goals both in the classroom, and on the ice as well!”
TPH students and families will also have the opportunity to work with Synapse in any of the various other services Synapse offers such as:
- Orthopedic care
- Sports medicine
- Manual therapy
- Spine care
- Dry needling
- IASTM (Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Massage)
- Cupping Therapy
- Joint Replacement Rehabilitation
- Work Hardening/Worker’s Compensation
- Auto Accidents
- Concussion Testing and Treatment
- Running Biomechanics and Gait Analysis
- Return to Sport Rehabilitation and Functional Testing
- Pre and Post-Operative Care
- Gait Training
- Injury Prevention Education
- Home Exercise Program Development
- ACL Prevention
- Athletic Training
- Kinesio Taping
Do not miss your chance to secure your spot at the Center of Excellence in Superior or Denver and take advantage of our blended learning environment! No matter what happens this year with COVID, TPH WILL Go The Distance and has a plan to pivot no matter what! Space is limited and we are down to our last few spots at each location! Take the first step and apply today, or fill out our inquiry form to connect with us.
Denver, CO – TPH Colorado is excited to announce the TPH Day schedules for both Denver and Superior. TPH Day is a completely FREE event that will allow families and players to hear presentations on the academics and Center of Excellence model as well as participate in an on-ice TPH practice. This is an opportunity to meet the TPH Colorado staff, see facilities, ask questions, and learn how #TPHGoesTheDistance.
If you are interested in the TPH Center of Excellence, this is a perfect opportunity to get a more full experience to better understand if it is a fit for you or your student-athlete at no charge. TPH Day – Denver will be held at the Family Sports Center on July 12th and TPH Day – Superior will take place at the Sports Stable on July 19th. Space is limited, below is the schedules and registration links for each location.
TPH Day Denver Schedule
July 12th at Family Sports Center
|12:30 - 12:40 pm||Check In / Receive Gift|
|12:40 p.m.||Introduction & Welcome|
|12:40 - 1:15 p.m.||Center of Excellence Model Overview|
|1:15 - 1:25 p.m.||Pre-Ice Video|
|1:25 - 1:35 p.m.||Dynamic Warm-up|
|2:00 - 3:00 p.m.||On-Ice|
|3:30 - 4:15 p.m.||Dryland (Academics at TPH Presentation)|
|4:20 p.m.||Q&A / Thank You and Meal in Banquet Room at FSC|
TPH Day Superior Schedule
July 19th at Sports Stable
|4:30 - 4:40 p.m.||Check In / Receive Gift|
|4:40 p.m.||Introduction / Welcom|
|4:40 - 5:15 p.m.||Center of Excellence Model Overview|
|5:15 - 5:25 p.m.||Pre-Ice Video|
|5:25 - 5:35 p.m.||Dynamic Warm-up|
|6:00 - 7:00 p.m.||On-Ice|
|7:15 - 7:45 p.m.||Academics at TPH Presentation|
|7:45 p.m.||Q&A / Thank You and Meal in Restaurant|
Space is limited at the Center of Excellence for the 2020-21 academic year. If you are interested and are ready to take the first step towards reserving your spot at the TPH Center of Excellence, click here to apply.
A University of Wisconsin graduate, Doman joined the TPH Superior team in 2019. Doman was drafted by the Calgary Flames in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft, is an alumnus of the United States National Team Development Program and brings ten years of coaching experience in Minnesota high school hockey. Doman has also previously served as the Director of Player Development for the Milwaukee Junior Admirals.