Fargo’s Kleven Ready to Make Impact in Year Two for UND Hockey
Kleven played on the third line defense and had seven points in his freshman year
GRAND FORKS, N.D — North Dakota’s Tyler Kleven has only just dipped his skates into the college game. As a freshman last season, the defenseman played 22 of the 29 games scoring five goals and dishing out two assists.
“Getting 20-30 games under my belt and getting adjusted to the speed and the physicality and just being able to play at that speed has really helped my game grow I think,” Kleven said. “This year I just want to keep adding on to that and contribute more both offensively and defensively.”
Now having a full offseason to get ready and knowing how quick he needed to be the Fargo native developed even more in that area.
“I’ve gotten a lot faster skating with some of the best players in college hockey right here in North Dakota and playing against other teams who are also fast, it allowed me to put in my edge work and seed,” Kleven said. “It’s really helped me out.”
The seven games the Ottawa Senators prospect did miss were because he was too busy winning a gold medal for team USA at world juniors experiencing that moment together with teammate Jake Sanderson.
“Spending so much time with him I thought we really came closer together. Just being able to have that chemistry moving from the national team to north dakota to usa and hopefully down the road with the senators we’ve become really good friends and it’s been great sharing those experiences with him.”
After spending year one on the third line behind current NHLers Jacob Bernard-Docker and Matt Kiersted, Kleven learned from them what it takes to have a bigger role and wants to take that on this season.
“Being able to come to the rink every day and be a professional. Always show up and have a purpose whether it’s on the ice in the weight room or just shooting pucks. Whatever it is just have a purpose. Don’t just go out there and be lackadaisical. They always came out on the ice and were ready to go.”
With the first game just nine days away against Bemidji State, Kleven and Sanderson could be paired together having done so in practice.