While Lonan Bulger has been busy putting up impressive numbers in the Manitoba Junior Hockey League, his younger sister has been quietly putting together an impressive hockey resume of her own in Minnesota.

And it appears all that hard work has paid off for Regan Bulger.

The 17-year-old Yellowknife resident, who plays defence, has officially signed her letter of intent to attend St. Cloud State University in Minnesota beginning next season to play with the women’s hockey team. The offer was made last week and she put her name on the dotted line over the weekend.

“I spoke with them a couple of weeks before and they invited me to take a tour of the school (Feb. 10),” she said. “They made me the offer when I was there but I waited until the weekend to make the decision. I’m really happy they reached out to me and this is my dream come true.”

Bulger has been playing her high school hockey at Shattuck St. Mary’s School in Minnesota for the past three seasons with this season and last spent with the girls prep squad. Prior to that, Bulger suited up for Team NT at both the 2019 Canada Winter Games and 2018 Arctic Winter Games, winning silver in the latter event with the girls team.

Scoring-wise at Shattuck St. Mary’s, she’s put up four goals and nine assists with the prep squad but scoring isn’t her forte.

“My job is to go out there and create plays,” she said. “I try to get a lot of shots on net — shots on net are always good because you can get a bounce go your way or something good can happen.”

Her first full season at Shattuck St. Mary’s was pretty much a wash as the team was sent home at Christmas with no games after that, all courtesy of Covid-19.

It was all practices that season, she said, but it picked up again the following season.

“We played almost a full season last year,” she said. “We got shut down a couple of time because of Covid-19 so we played less games but we still had a pretty full season. This year has been really busy and we’ve been fortunate that we’ve been able to play as much as we have.”

When it comes to St. Cloud State, it’s not a case of walking in the front door and hitting the ice because the playing time must be earned, she said.

“They told me that I have to prove myself,” she said. “It’s in my hands so I have to go out there and show them I can play.”

With her scholastic future seemingly planned out, Bulger has her eyes set on playing hockey as long as she can, including a shot at making a living out of it.

“My goal is to play professionally,” she said. “I think there will be a big pro women’s hockey league one day and I’m hoping it will happen.”

Bulger said she does miss home sometimes and even though she still considers herself a Northerner, Minnesota has become home base.

“I love it down here,” she said. “It’s my second home but I miss some of the people back home.

James McCarthy

After being a nomad around North America following my semi-debauched post-secondary days, I put down my roots in Yellowknife in 2006. I’ve been keeping this sports seat warm with NNSL for the better...

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