Attending St. Cloud State University has always been the dream for Winnipeg’s own Adam Ingram. That dream is about to become a reality, thanks to his on-ice skill, and the fact that he recently signed his letter of intent in commitment to an NCAA Division I hockey career.
“St. Cloud is really close to home, so that’s something that I love about it,” Ingram told Game On. “It’s a fairly small school with only a few thousand students there. It has always just been one of those places that I’ve always wanted to play as a kid growing up. I couldn’t be more excited to actually go there.”
Much like that of most North Americans, the 17-year-old West St. Paul product has had himself an interesting year. Having seen his Grade 11 minor hockey season end early, the hope was that a full year of Manitoba Junior Hockey League action was in the cards for Grade 12.
Unfortunately, that was not the case, but not by any fault of his own. Ingram actually did everything he could to see a successful 2020-21 season, however, after just eight games with the Selkirk Steelers, the MJHL called off its season due to growing concerns surrounding the pandemic.
During those eight games, the first-year Junior ‘A’ player scored twice, while adding five assists for seven points and put up eight penalty minutes in the process. He then saw his season fatefully come to a very early end. School went to remote learning, and his convocation from Garden City Collegiate was held as a ‘drive-up graduation ceremony’.
“Obviously, it was really tough at the start when the MJ got shut down due to COVID,” Ingram said. “Not being able to get on the ice was something that I really wanted to do, but couldn’t. I was on the outdoor rinks quite a bit. I managed to through it pretty easily and got the hang of it after a while. It was a bit of a struggle at the start, but it worked out well.”
The 6-foot-3, 165-pound forward had a number of options at his fingertips, but chose to stick around and hopefully wait out the virus. Unfortunately, Manitoba’s top health and government officials had other plans, and organized sport became a casualty of COVID-19.
“I wasn’t too sure what was going to happen at first,” he said. “I was kind of hoping that we would somehow be able to continue our season. But after we kind of got shutdown for the year I started talking to the associate head coach at St. Cloud, Dave Shyiak. Things went really well with our relationship and we lined up a visit with the school.”
Already set to spend next year and potentially the 2022-23 season with the Youngstown Phantoms of the Tier I United States Hockey League, Ingram couldn’t help but sign a few papers to pave the way for a college hockey career as he passed by the St. Cloud campus in Minnesota.
“After I went down to the Youngstown camp, I popped in for a visit on my way back,” Ingram beamed. “That’s actually when they offered me the spot and I was thrilled with it.”
Now back in his native province, the 17-year-old has been able to turn his attention back to his other love – that of the sport of golf. Competing regularly, Ingram – who is affiliated through Golf Canada with Elmhurst Golf and Country Club – has actually played in a number of well recognized amateur and junior events. And unbeknownst to some, he is off to continue that adventure over the coming weekend.
“Yeah, I make it work out pretty good,” he laughed, when asked about balancing both hockey and golf. “I am actually heading out to Quebec on Friday for the Canadian Junior, so I’m very exciting for that. Scheduling can be tricky at times, but this one fits in just right.”