STAMFORD — The Trinity Catholic High School athletic department saw another promising young coach leave the Crusaders as boys ice hockey head coach Tucker Grose resigned following the 2018-19 season.
Grose’s departure is connected to a change in his personal life which necessitates a move out of state.
“It was a difficult decision to leave Trinity Catholic hockey. I was committed to building the program back to what it was in its heyday,” Grose said. “I want the Trinity Catholic High hockey program to stay alive. I felt we did an admirable job the past two seasons. It’s tough to leave. But it was a family decision I had to make.”
Grose had been a hockey assistant coach at King School (two years) and Newtown High School (three years) before earning his first high school head coaching job at Trinity Catholic.
His dad, Jody, was the hockey head coach at Staples High for 11 years.
“Trinity Catholic High School is a very supportive community. There is a special passion about the school and about their sports programs,” Grose said. “The students always had strong support online. And the Trinity Catholic alumni were always gracious and helpful to me.”
Frank Fedak, who just saw his title change from interim athletic director to permanent athletic director at Trinity Catholic, is sad to see Grose leave and has began the process of searching for the next Crusaders’ boys ice hockey head coach.
Playing in the FCIAC despite having small rosters (nine in 2017-18 and 14 in 2018-19), Grose kept the Crusaders engaged and maintained a positive outlook.
Trinity Catholic was 1-18, 1-10 FCIAC in 2017-18 and played without a true goaltender (transfer Lance Lippmann did not become eligible until late in the season).
“I learned how as the head coach you always roll with the punches. There are always challenges being thrown your way,” Grose said. “There is a thin margin for error with a smaller roster. I learned patiences. I learned that you keep finding solutions and stay positive.”
The Crusaders and Grose fared better this past season with goalie Jeff Reda in the net throughout. Trinity Catholic finished 5-15 overall, 2-9 in the FCIAC and qualified for the Division III state tournament.
“Each team has its own personality. Each team is a unique challenge and you learn a lot more,” Grose said. “I learned about flexibility and innovations in conducting practices. There are so many lessons I can take into my next hockey coaching job when it comes.”