Although his time as a Klipper was short, Calgary, Alberta's Kyle Ford showed that he was a leader in that time. The 20-year-old signed with the University of Alberta Augustana of the Alberta College's Athletic Association on the weekend after his final season of Junior A hockey was cut short by the pandemic. Ford scored his lone tally of the shortened three game season in the first game early in the third period as an insurance goal in their 5-2 win over the Battlefords North Stars. 

Before the games started though, Ford was a leader in the room during what ended up being a long, extended training camp. He says a big part of the reason he got into a college opportunity was because his coaches went the extra mile in helping him get his name out to a number of post secondary groups to help him find a good fit.

"It was obviously really tough not having the exposure of getting the season in like the other leagues in the CJHL, but getting that three games was definitely not enough. I thank my coaching staff so much. They helped and supported and got me along the way, and staff they reached out. I reached out and then honestly everything kind of fell into place when I found out that Jake and Jordan (former teammates) were going there, it just was meant to be."

While the extended training camp was tough on players, Ford found inspiration in an unlikely place to keep the intensity up at practice.

"It's funny to say, but after that Michael Jordan documentary aired, it became like practices were so much more intense to me. I took in a lot of factors from that and I wanted to practice as hard as I would play. Even though we weren't playing I still you had to get the most out of it. You had to be ready and I felt like we were ready as a practice team."

He was one of the pickups of the offseason after a strong 19-year-old season with the La Ronge Ice Wolves where he was a noticeable presence on the ice any time he stepped on, earning 16 goals and 30 assists for a total of 46 points in 57 games along with a modest 56 penalty minutes for a team that had a hard edge to their game. A large part of his commitment to Augustana was the fact that two of his former Ice Wolves teammates, Jordan Mish and Jake Gudjonson, were both going to be playing there this year as well.

Before coming to the SJHL, Ford spent a year in the KIJHL with the Fernie Ghostriders where again her averaged close to a point per game with 42 points in 48 games during the regular season and amother four points in the playoffs that year in eight games.

While the addition of Ford to the roster happeened before he took over control of the team, Head Coach Ken Plaquin believes he had an easy decision to make Ford one of his assistant captains. During the extended training camp that most teams went through last year and the three games they did get to play, Ford's fire and passion was well on display to his coaches.

"He is probably one of the funnest kids I've ever coached if I can say it that way. He loves to lead, he's had so much fun playing hockey, and I can honestly say that I was sad that I didn't get a chance to coach him a lot longer. I think we would have had a lot of fun together."

During the extended training camp, there was a lot of uncertainty on whether or not players would even get a chance to play any actual hockey. Instead, the camp continued on and on, and for some players that became frustrating, but Plaquin says that Ford's influence was still a big part of what kept intensity up during the preperation for the eventual short season.

"I wouldn't say he owned the dressing room, but he was definitely one of the biggest personalities in the dressing room and he was the same way on the bench and on the ice too. He wasn't shy to voice his opinions, to come talk to the coaches, and to be a really good conduit between the players and the coaches, and all of the players loved him. He's just a great guy, a great guy in the dressing room and probably the hardest worker on the team in games too." 

Although his time in Kindersley was short, Ford will carry fond memories out of his experience here, epsecially with some of the deep connections with his billet family here.

"It's too bad I haven't seen my little bro Maddox in a while, I miss him all the time. He's great. Cory, Deanna, I miss you guys. It's too bad I didn't get get a full year with you. Obviously Maddie, you too, and then the Adamson family for sure, and my coaching staff."

Ford will be studying Kinesiology when he heads to Augustana in Canmore, and has spent the offseason working as a personal trainer.