Christian Gingras earned his way into the Blue Hens Hall of Fame by becoming one of the best two-way defensemen the Blue Hens have ever had. By his senior season, he was almost a point per game player on the blue line and was an All-American.
Christian was late to get into hockey by today’s standards. He did not start playing until the third grade, unlike the other players I’ve interviewed that all began playing when they were as young as five. When asked why he became interested in hockey, he said “My two older brothers played college hockey. I played other sports like baseball and golf but hockey was always my favorite because my brothers played it.”
Despite growing up in Pennsylvania, when it came time to choose between Delaware and Penn State, he chose Delaware. His biggest reason for choosing Delaware was because he was more confident he would get immediate playing time with the Blue Hens.
The move paid off for Christian. He played in 25 games his first year with the team. He had 10 points and an impressive 17 +/- on the blue line. The Blue Hens would end up winning the ECHA championship for the first time, an achievement Christian would rank as one of his favorites at UD.
The team would continue to have success in their conference, winning the ECHA championship three of the four years. His role would continue to grow with the team heading into his junior year.
That year, his brother, Matt, joined him on the team. Christian was able to play with his brother in his Junior and Senior years, and called the experience “awesome.” Christian managed to put up 26 points on the blue line, and send his team to another ACHA tournament berth. He played well enough there to earn a place on the ACHA Tournament team. He also became an All-American for the first time and became one of the better two-way defenders in the ACHA.
When I asked him about his best moment as a Blue Hen, he responded, “I think the best moment was winning my last game at nationals. At the time, that was the highest ranking that Delaware had ever finished, which was sixth in the country. I know the team has done better since then, but at the time we were really proud of that. I think that going out with a win is a pretty cool thing.”
He managed to become an All-American again his senior year, on top of being a business major. Christian said that learning how to manage his time between his business degree and his hockey career was one of the toughest challenges he faced at UD. “It was challenging at times, but I think that since I had three or four days of practice and a couple games a week, it made me prioritize more time for my school work. It wasn’t easy, because I had to focus more on studying and had to find time around playing hockey.”
Christian is now a member of the Blue Hens Hall of Fame. Christian called the process “a great experience. I think I got in on 2000. I got a call from the hall of fame committee in the summer letting me know that I had been voted in. I was really proud of that. I got to go out to center ice and they announced my name over the speakers as I was getting my plaque in front of the fans and the team then. I was very honored to have won that.”
By: Tyler Fitzpatrick