The Kitchener Rangers prepare to embark on their 57th season in the Ontario Hockey League. A strong finish to the 2018-2019 regular season was squandered by an early first-round exit from the playoffs. A sweep at the hands of the Guelph Storm was an upset for the Rangers and their loyal fans.
An effort that lacked overall offensive production. Goaltending and a defensive group which all struggled to contain the high powered Guelph Storm. Guelph was a juggernaut and Kitchener had no response.
Rest assured, steps to negate that from repeating have been taken in Kitchener. Welcome Jacob Ingham, the Barrie, Ontario goaltender spent the previous 3 seasons with the Mississauga Steelheads. Mississauga originally selected Jacob in the second round of the 2016 OHL priority draft.
In 2018-2019 Jacob set a career-high for regular-season games played with 57 starts for the Steelheads. The former Mississauga goaltender finished with a 3.41 Goals against average and .890 Saves percentage.
Prior to his final season in Mississauga, Jacob appeared in 31 games during the 2016-2017 season. He would surpass that total the following season starting 43 games in 2017-2018.
His experience will be crucial to the Kitchener Rangers, a lineup with plenty of youth for the 2019-2020 season. Ingham will be the key to a deep playoff run this season for Kitchener.
Acquired from the Mississauga Steelheads via trade, Jacob brings a ton of playoff experience. The newest netminder to join the Rangers organization is a Los Angeles Kings draft choice, he was selected in the sixth round of the 2018 NHL entry draft.
Factor in the amount of overall in-game experience Jacob brings with him and it’s quite clear why the Rangers management made the deal to acquire him. The value of his experience will play a big role in Kitchener in 2019-2020.
His first season in the OHL Jacob Ingham started 6 playoff games. He followed that up with 5 post-season starts in 2017-2018. Last season he started 4 playoff games as the Steelheads were defeated in the 1st round.
This will be a big season for Jacob who prepares for his fourth season in the Ontario Hockey League. The 6 foot 4 netminder remains without an entry-level contract from the Los Angeles Kings. A strong season in Kitchener will only benefit him and his chances of capturing that elusive entry-level deal.
Jacob joins a Kitchener Rangers lineup that will look a lot different once the season begins in September. A solid crop of returning players should ease the transition for the newest members, although growing pains are expected for the younger Rangers roster.