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UND hockey: Shedding light on a different attack

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- It's a routine that has become all too familiar for University of North Dakota senior David Lundbohm. Every year men's hockey media day at the University of North Dakota attracts dozens of local reporters. And every year, nar...

GRAND FORKS, N.D. -- It's a routine that has become all too familiar for University of North Dakota senior David Lundbohm.

Every year men's hockey media day at the University of North Dakota attracts dozens of local reporters. And every year, nary Lundbohm is ignored by a majority of them.

Wednesday afternoon was no different. Standing outside the team locker room, away from the bright lights of the television cameras, the soft-spoken 6-foot-1 center seemed as if he's grown accustomed to being left out of the spotlight.

"It's not something I'm really concerned about," said Lundbohm of his lack of exposure. "It's not a big deal to me."

Despite not owning the most recognizable faces on the Fighting Sioux, his importance to UND's success this year might be immeasurable.

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Likely centering the team's second line, Lundbohm will be counted on to lead an alternate offensive attack when UND's top line of Zach Parise, Brandon Bochenski and freshman Brady Murray are neutralized by opposing defenses.

It was something the team struggled with at the end of last season.

"Last year we didn't seem to have a lot of options down the stretch," Sioux head coach Dean Blais said. "Hopefully this year we can find some."

Blais believes Lundbohm is ready to be that guy.

"I think David is ready for a banner senior year," he said. "He's probably been our top forward in practice so far this year. He's gotten a lot of ice time in his three years here."

Time on the ice has not translated into time in front of a camera for Lundbohm. That's mainly because being overlooked is something he has been dealing with his entire hockey career.

Throughout high school and into college, David played in the shadows of his older brother Bryan, who went on to star at UND and then for the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals.

Even as a standout player with the Fargo-Moorhead Ice Sharks, playing in half-empty arenas on a nightly basis was the norm.

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"Those games were always tough to get up for," said Lundbohm, who is one of only two Ice Shark alumni remaining in college hockey. "But it was a good experience for me, I got a lot of ice time and a lot of experience."

It's experience that Lundbohm has put to good use.

As a junior last year, the second-line center quietly finished fifth in the nation with 37 assists. His 52 points ranked him 14th in Division I college hockey, tied with Hobey Baker hopeful Tom Preissing.

Yet, he again went undrafted in the NHL entry draft and received little attention on a team that boasted a pair of talented young forwards in Parise and Bochenski.

"I don't really care who gets the attention. I just look at it as the better players we have, the better team we're going to have," Lundbohm said. "My biggest goal for this year is to get down to the Frozen Four again, because that's where you get scouted a majority of the teams. You don't get that if you lose in the first round of the playoffs."

Lundbohm dreams of playing in the NHL one day, but for right now is focused on getting his team back to a national championship game.

"When I was a freshman, we were one goal away from a national championship," he said. "Ever since then we've wanted to get back there. Hopefully this is our year to do it."

If this quiet, potential-captain can lead his team to a national title, he may have a new problem altogether -- hiding from the media.

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Readers can reach Forum reporter Mike Cummings at (701) 241-5549

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