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.”
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