Kyle Sharkey named Interim Head Coach, Ryan Cruthers to join son Blake in prestigious Quebec International Tournament 

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. – The Fayetteville Marksmen, proud members of the SPHL, have announced Kyle Sharkey will serve as Interim Head Coach effective immediately; Head Coach Ryan Cruthers joins son Blake, who’s set to play in the prestigious two-week Quebec (Canada) International Pee-Wee Tournament. 

“I am very grateful for the opportunity to step away from the team to support my son Blake at the 64th International Pee-Wee Quebec Tournament,” said Cruthers. “As a player, I got to experience this once-in-a-lifetime event and based on all the sacrifices others have made for my career, this is something I could not miss for my son.” 

The annual tournament hosts 120 teams from all around the world and has been attended by some of the most notable names in hockey history including Guy Lafleur, Mario Lemieux, Steve Yzerman, Mike Modano and Wayne Gretzky. Each team gets a chance to play in the Vidéotron Centre, which seats over 18,000. 

“We are in great hands with Kyle Sharkey and the others that will assist him, as well as our players. I want to thank Chuck for the opportunity to be in Quebec and I know our staff and players will make us proud while I am gone.” 

Sharkey is in his first season with Fayetteville and has helped the team off to a 24-7-4 start. His defensive structure has led the Marksmen’s penalty kill to the top of the SPHL and overall, the team has allowed the second-fewest goals with an average of just 2.6 GA/GM. 

Sharkey will be joined on the bench by Fayetteville Director of Scouting Chris Cosentino, Carolina Premier Hockey Coach Justin Fisher, and Charlotte Rush Coach Trevor Kleckner during Cruthers’s absence. 

“[They] have all spent time on the bench this season and are familiar with exactly how we want to play and operate,” said Cruthers. 

Team Owner and CEO Chuck Norris explained the importance of the opportunity for Cruthers to join Blake for the historic event. 

The Marksmen organization is a family-owned business,” said Norris. “From myself, Lanai and our three kids, to Alex (Wall), Suzanne and their two boys, to the entire staff and their families; We understand that family comes first. 

I’ve known Blake Cruthers since he was 4 years old. The tournament is a really big event for young hockey players. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so, of course Ryan wants to be by his side, and we absolutely want him to be there. 

 We are happy for them to go and anxious to see Blake’s success at the tournament. We wish them the best of luck and safe travels from all of us here at the Marksmen.” 


Cruthers is scheduled to return to the team ahead of Fayetteville’s weekend series against the Quad City Storm February 23-25. 

The Marksmen take on the Macon Mayhem on Saturday, February 10, for Operation Sellout at 6PM. Single-game tickets to all 2023-24 Marksmen home games are available at