If the 2014-15 AAA TPH Thunder organization were publicly traded they would be looked at as a strong buy recommendation by stockbrokers on Wall Street.
Not only do they have a continually expanding hockey program, but now they are expanding more to include a Center of Excellence to provide student athletes a more concentrated development opportunity. The Thunder provided a description on their program which is now available in Canton, Michigan, Evansville, Indiana, Now Gwinnett, Georgia.
TPH Center of Excellence offers: flexible and personalized learning, certified teachers, a standards-aligned curriculum, state-of-the-art technology, a secure easy-to-use online learning system, and an extensive selection of electives and clubs to create an individualized alternative to the traditional classroom. The award-winning curriculum includes AP courses, foreign languages, core academics and more. Among the engaging electives offered will be Juilliard eLearning, online music courses developed exclusively with the famed conservatory. Experienced Learning Coaches will provide on-site support to help guide students through the school’s comprehensive online curriculum.
“Virtual school is especially well suited to student athletes who desire to compete at the highest level in their sport, yet do not want to compromise on their academics.”
– Dr. Patricia Hoge, executive vice president of curriculum and instruction for Connections Education.”
The southern based Huntsville, Alabama TPH Thunder organization has grown enormously in both size and success and are being noticed throughout the country gaining notice as a top flight operation with to notch coaching and capable management.
MyHockeyRankings.com the preeminent measurement the Top 20 AAA teams in North America shows the following levels:
• Mite (ages 8 & under) (Levels AA, A, )
• Squirt (ages 9–10) (Levels AAA, AA, A, )
• Peewee (ages 11–12) (Levels AAA, AA, A, )
• Bantam (ages 13–14) (Levels AAA, AA, A,)
• Midget Minor 16 and Under (ages 15–16) (Levels AAA, AA, junior varsity high school-A)
• Midget Major 18 and Under (ages 15–18) (Levels AAA, AA, varsity high school-AA and AAA)
• Junior (ages 16 to 20) (Cut-off age varies depending on the league)
Many organizations and leagues that have larger numbers of registered players tend to offer a two year window allowed for each age group. In these situations, teams composed entirely or primarily of players in their second year of eligibility are designated ‘major’ teams, while those with players in their 1st year of eligibility are designated ‘minor’ teams. (For example, ten year olds would be ‘squirt majors’ while nine year olds would be ‘squirt minors.’) This is especially true in “AAA”.
USA Hockey designates four skill levels:
Tier 1: The Highest Level of Competition , commonly called “AAA”, following the Canadian system.
Tier 2: The Next Higher Level of Competition commonly called “AA” or “A”, following the Canadian system.
Tier 3: The Next Higher Level of Competition (Not all districts use this designation), may also be called “A”, the entry level of competitive hockey.
Recreational/Developmental: Includes House League and Select (House All-Star) Teams. May be called “B”, “C”, etc.
. The Tier I for the 18U, 16U, 14U, and 12U age divisions.
The 2014-15 season provided many bright spots including a head to head matchup between The Thunder National team and the American unit and games featuring the Thunder versus the Atlanta Fire ( ranked 77th nationally).
The U18 team’s record is 22-20-0 coached by Paul Flache. The team has had to adopt a defensive strategy with a 131 goals for and a 126 goals against record. The team has been adversely affected by injuries for a portion of the season, but has shown resilience and was able to win some tough matchups this season. The top scorers are: Matthew Jennings, Zach Sarnowski, and Thomas Cody
The U16 National Team coached by Ron Gay has a record of 28-18-2 staying close to 500 in the Tier 1 Elite League. After going a combined 2-1-2 at the Bauer Invitational, playing 4 of their 5 games against top 10 teams, expectations were high earlier in the season, but the team played inconsistently. The top scorers are: Jake Walker, Kyle Kawamura, and William Schlagenhauf. Coach Keith Rowe said, “Our team shows signs of taking big steps forwards. Our challenge is our inconsistency from period to period and game to game, which is causing us not to get the results we are looking for.” “On a positive note, many of our players are getting individual Junior and NCAA recognition, through their strong play”, added Coach Ron Gay.
The American squad coached by Roman Marakovski and is led by scoring leaders Chuck Bay, Nolan Echols, and Marquez Ginger. The team has improved during the season, but is looking to find a solution to their away game performance. Currently they have a .500 away record and a 26-14-4 record for the season.
Thunder National coached by Keith Rowe has a record of 37-16-6, and is ranked 20th in the country. The Thunder has been tested playing a number of top 25 teams. They recently came out on top at the Music City Tournament winning the championship game against the Thunder American squad. The top scorers on the team are: Sean McAvoy, David Dedo and Braiden Dorfman.
The Team coached by Kevin Hilton consists of: Jonah Bednar, Nicholas Bruno, Jared Darrow (G), Ryland Dukes, Andre Farvin, SynClair Goyer, Colin Hedge (A), Collin Hilton (G), Cole Kodsi, Jory Linderkugel, Kolton McDaniel, Joshua Morris, Trevor Russell, Jonathan Shaw (C), Charles Easton Shepard, Garrett Spain, Noah Vollhoffer, Jalen Wand and Jake Watkins. The American squad has surprised some onlookers by winning some tough contests against some top opponents and has a 27-23-4 record. The Americans also defeated their neighboring rivals, the Atlanta Fire shutting them out 8-0 and 4-0. The teams top scorers are Garrett Spain, Nicholas Bruno and Ryland Dykes Jonathan Shaw (tied for 3rd).
TheThunder Bantam Minor team coached by Chris Fairbanks has achieved a impressive winning streak and is ranked 38th nationally with a record of 26-14-4. The team has found its scoring touch to accompany its strong defensive play and is outscoring opponents most of the season by more than a 2 to 1 ratio. They won the Atlanta Super Series, during which the team played 196 minutes of shutout hockey anchored by goalie Logan Stein who has 1.04 goals against. No information is available on the top scorers.
The Thunder 02 Peewee Major team coached by Steve Milosevski is ranked 37th nationally and has a 31-17-4 record. Top three scorers information was unavailable at time of publishing.
The Thunder 2003 Peewee Major team has enjoyed some success in the first half of the season in winning the consolation bracket of the Compuware/Honeybaked Classic, beating HoneyBaked 2-1 in Detroit and completely dominating a solid Columbus Blue Jackets team 5-1 at home in Columbus.
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