King Philip Walpole Youth Hockey is a non-profit USA Hockey-registered community hockey organization for boys and girls from Norfolk, Plainville, Walpole and Wrentham, with a tradition dating back more than 40 years.
Beginning with the high school classes graduating in 2016, the King Philip Walpole Youth Hockey board of directors has awarded alumni scholarships to recognize outstanding graduating seniors who have demonstrated a remarkable commitment to academics, community, leadership and sportsmanship, as well as to playing a role in the development of younger student-athletes within the KPW program.
Sam Colella pulled on his first KPW jersey when he was 7 years old and has been a constant presence in the program ever since. Beginning as a first-year mite, Sam has been a KPW player for 11 years, passing on his experience as a student coach of two KPW mite teams over the past two seasons while he juggled an impressive list of commitments. Sam played four years on the KP ice hockey team; was a four-year member of the KP tennis team, serving as a co-captain his senior season; and played three seasons on the soccer team. As a longtime member of Boy Scouts Troop 131, Sam held many leadership roles and capped his scouting commitment by earning his Eagle Scout, the highest rank in the Boy Scouts of America. During his Eagle Scout project at St. Mary’s Abbey in Wrentham, Sam created new trails and performed maintenance on old trails, adding signs and creating a map for St. Mary’s Abbey residents and their guests. Sam will attend Providence College, where he plans to study accounting.
Caroline Wilkins had a difficult decision to make when she began attending Bishop Feehan, which has no girls’ ice hockey team: Give up the sport she’d played for nearly 10 years or try to play on the Feehan boys’ team? Never one to back down from a challenge, she ended up making Bishop Feehan history by becoming the first girl to score a goal during a Feehan boys’ varsity game. Caroline played on KPW teams for nine seasons, including four district championship-winning girls U14 and U19 teams, and also volunteered to help as a student coach for KPW’s Little Bruins and Instructional programs. She suffered a concussion during her junior season at Feehan that prevented her from playing her senior season, but still participated by being the team manager. Caroline also played on the Feeham girls' volleyball and softball teams and was a member of the French and Art honors societies. An active Girl Scout from kindergarten through her senior year, Caroline earned her Girl Scout for Life Award, Book Award and Bronze Award because of her commitment to the program. Caroline will attend Elon College.
Molly Alfond started playing hockey in the KPW Instructional program and graduated as a co-captain of the King Philip High School girls hockey team. In between she grew up in KPW as a mite, squirt and pee wee, then capped her career by playing on KPW’s girls U19 teams for three seasons. Alfond also volunteered for five years as a KPW student coach, helping with the Girls In-House, Instructional and Little Bruins programs, supporting Try Hockey for Free events and tryouts, and running a four-week Introduction to Hockey series for first-time players. Molly plans to attend Norwich University, where she will major in mathematics.
Anyone looking to see the evolution of KPW’s jerseys could look in Joseph Byrnes’ closet — he first put on a KPW jersey as a 5-year-old in 2003 and wore one every season until he graduated last month. Beginning with the KPW Instructional program, he continued to play as a mite, squirt, pee wee, bantam and midget, amassing 13 seasons with the program, and he played four years of high school hockey at Walpole High School, the last two on the varsity team. In addition, he volunteered twice as a KPW student coach; served as the South Shore Conference's on-site director for mite half-ice games at Foxboro Sports Center; and helped with tryouts. Joey plans to attend Bridgewater State University, where he will major in criminal justice.
Casie Curtin was a co-captain of the King Philip High School girls hockey team as a junior and senior, and graduated as the school’s all-time leading scorer in ice hockey. She played three seasons on the KPW U19 team and volunteered as a student coach of KPW’s girls U12 and U14 teams for four seasons, also helping with the Little Bruins program, supporting Try Hockey for Free events and tryouts and running a four-week Introduction to Hockey series for first-time players. Casie plans to continue her ice hockey career at Salem State, where she plans to major in biology.