The Fort Wayne Komets induct former player and current Fort Wayne Spacemen Head Coach Kaleigh Schrock into their Hall of Fame.
Kaleigh Schrock might be the biggest longshot ever to make the Fort Wayne Komets Hall of Fame. That’s kind of cool because everything he accomplished during his playing career was about overcoming incredible odds.
Video courtesy WANE Inside the Zone
Fort Wayne Spacemen Head Coach Kaleigh Schrock
A Fort Wayne native, Coach Schrock played his youth and high school hockey in the city before leaving for Juniors hockey. Coach Kaleigh then captained the Neumann University program to a Division III national championship before returning to Fort Wayne as a part of the ECHL Fort Wayne Komets.
Coach Kaleigh played 439 games over six seasons for the Komets, collecting 81 goals, 152 points and 854 penalty minutes. Regarded as a speedy, tenacious forward and something of an underdog, Schrock was named the Komets Rookie of the Year for the 2009-2010 season, and was part of that seasons International Hockey League championship winning team. Schrock was also a member of the Central Hockey League championship winning team in the 2011-2012 season. Schrock captained the Komets from late 2013 until his retirement in 2015.
After his professional playing career, Coach Schrock stayed in Fort Wayne to oversee youth programs at the SportONE/Parkview Icehouse as well as at the Trine University rink, where he was also the assistant arena manager. Coach Kaleigh also found the time to coach the Summit City Panthers to an Indiana state high school championship.
“It’s been (beneficial) just having the experience of developing an entire youth program, and going back and literally teaching kids who are 6 years old how to skate, and going back and redefining the fundamentals,” Schrock said. “And I’ve had just the itch to stay competitive as well. Helping the kids skate at a higher level is something I’m passionate about.”
Schrock was the logical choice to become the first Head Coach of the Spacemen, viewing the program as "... a trampoline to get kids to the next step. Having experienced that myself, it will help me establish rapport with some of those kids in that situation.”
The Fort Wayne Komets will induct Coach Schrock into the Komets' Hall of Fame on March 7, 2020.
Josh Moles, Assistant Coach
Growing up and playing his youth hockey in Fort Wayne, Indiana, Josh Moles went on to play four years for Culver Military Academy Prep team. After Culver, Josh played one year of Junior A hockey splitting time between the Bismarck Bobcats (NAHL) and the Seguin Bruins (OPJHL) before moving on and playing NCAA DIII ECAC-NE Hockey for Nichols College located in Dudley, Massachusetts.
After a short stint playing for the Dayton Demonz (FHL), Josh joined Next Level Hockey as the Director of Hockey Operations located in Sterling, Virginia where he was responsible for Player Development as well as Daily Operations for the organization.
Coach Moles has also held coaching positions with the Potomac Patriots (USPHL), Washington Little Caps Bantam AAA, and Team Maryland Midget AAA programs located in the Washington D.C. Metropolitan Area.
Coach Moles brings a wealth of experience working with top tier AAA programs as well as helping players advance to the next level with former players currently playing in the USHL, NAHL, and committing NCAA DI and DIII.
Brian Gratz, a native of Fort Wayne, IN, graduated from Penn State University in 2004 where he helped the Penn State hockey team capture 4 consecutive ACHA D1 national championships and garnered All- American honors as a goaltender. Following his college career, he played professionally from 2004-2007 in various leagues such as the AHL, ECHL, UHL, CHL and SPHL, including a stint with the Fort Wayne Komets during the 2004-05 season.
For the last 13 years, Brian has been a professional hockey coach. He has 9 years of experience as a head coach and director of hockey operations (6 seasons at the ‘AA‘ level- ECHL and CHL, 3 seasons at the ‘A’ level). Among his duties as a head coach, he served as the minor league affiliate and development coach for the Chicago Blackhawks 2012-13, Tampa Bay Lightning 2015-16 and New York Rangers 2015-18. As a head coach, Brian has amassed over 250 regular season and playoff wins, 2 league championships, MAHL coach of the year 2008, finalist for coach of year in the CHL (2011) and ECHL (2017), and holder of various franchise records for Dayton (CHL/ECHL) and Greenville (ECHL) for consecutive wins, wins in a season, and best regular season record. In 2008, he set the professional hockey record for most consecutive wins with 26 in a row as head coach for the Indiana Ice Miners of the MAHL.
Last season, Brian Gratz joined fellow Fort Wayne native and former Komets head coach, Gary Graham, in Beijing, China as the assistant coach for ORG Beijing in the VHL (AAA professional Russian league under the KHL). As the top assistant coach, Brian was responsible for coaching the forwards, goaltenders and the team’s power play. His power play finished as the 2nd best in the VHL amongst 31 teams, helping ORG finish with its best record and highest total of goals scored in a season in franchise history.
“Kaleigh has built an exceptional program for these young athletes to grow and develop as hockey players and men. I am very excited for the opportunity to work with him and his staff. Fort Wayne is my home and it is exciting to be a part of the vision that the ownership group has for continuing to grow hockey in our community.”
John Salway, Skating/Skills Coach
A Fort Wayne native, Coach Salway began his skating career at 3 years old as a competitive figure skater. Salway earned the right to compete on behalf of the United States for the first time at 12 years old as a singles competitor, and again between 2004-2007, where he was named to Team USA.
Over 23 years of competitive skating, Coach Salway is a national and international medalist in both singles and pairs disciplines and is a Senior (Gold) level test in three disciplines.
Salway started coaching in 2001 while still competing, but after retiring from competitive figure skating he found a niche in teaching skating skills and edges to hockey players.
Over 19 years of coaching, Coach Salway has had the opportunity to work with developing players and teams at all levels, from their first steps on the ice through professionals.
Salway has a unique ability to develop a skaters balance, awareness of their edges, and overall movement. Salway believes in the power of a process and building good habits from a strong foundation.
Coach Salway is currently the Assistant Hockey Director at SportOne Parkview Icehouse, Assistant Coach for the Fort Wayne Vipers high school team, and skating and skills coach for USPHL Fort Wayne Spacemen, Indiana Tech Hockey, and the ECHL Fort Wayne Komets.
Parris Duffus, Goalie Coach
Parris Duffus grew up in Denver, Colorado playing hockey and after high school headed to Canada to follow his hockey dreams. After a 2 years of junior hockey in Melfort Saskatchewan, where he was drafted by the St. Louis Blues 180th overall in 1990, he moved on to Cornell University.
After playing two seasons at Cornell he signed with the St. Louis Blues. Throughout his 10 year professional career he played in the ECHL, IHL, NHL with the Phoenix Coyotes, DEL in Germany, SM Liiga in Finland, and the Russian Elite League (which became the KHL).
Parris also played on USA National teams competing for the IIHF World Championships in 1996, 1998, and 1999, which included a bronze medal win in 1996.
Parris’s coaching experience spans many years and age groups most recently head coaching the Carroll Chargers in the 2018-19 season. He has been an assistant and goalie coach working with teams in Fort Wayne. Parris completed the USA Hockey Level 5 coaching program in 2018 and plans to continue to learn as much as he can and share his hockey knowledge and experience with the players and coaches he works with.
Jerry Maust is entering his first year as part of the Fort Wayne Spacemen. A recent transplant to the Fort Wayne Area from Connecticut, Jerry brings a wide variety of hockey knowledge to the bench.
Before joining the Spacemen, Maust spent the previous 9 seasons as part of the Mark T. Sheehan High School Titans Ice Hockey Coaching staff where he worked primarily with the goalies and defensemen. During those 9 years, he helped guide the Titans to 9 consecutive playoff berths. Maust continues to work with the Titans as a video consultant. Maust also served as a The Wallingford Hawks Youth Hockey Association’s (Wallingford, CT) Goalie Development coach.
In addition to his time spent with the Titans and Hawks, Maust worked at Quinnipiac University’s Rand Pecknold Hockey Camps and the Mitch Korn Goalie Camp.
Since moving to Fort Wayne, Maust has started coaching with the Carroll Chargers Hockey Club and is an instructor for the Fort Wayne Amateur Hockey Association as an on-ice goalie instructor.
Before becoming a coach, Maust was four-year member of the Ohio Wesleyan University Battling Bishops Club Ice Hockey team and a three-year captain and president for the club program.
Maust holds an Undergraduate Degree from Ohio Wesleyan University in Exercise Science and a Master’s Degree from University of New Haven (CT) in Management of Sports Industries. He is currently a CIAC Certified Coach.