Kleinendorst returning to NE Minnesota

Grand Rapids native Kurt Kleinendorst will be back in Northeastern Minnesota this weekend as coach of Alabama-Huntsville, which faces Minnesota Duluth in games Friday and Saturday at Amsoil Arena.

Kleinendorst, 52, is in his first season with Huntsville and previously coached in the NHL and American Hockey League, and with the USA U18 team in Ann Arbor, Mich. He said he’s looking forward to watching Thursday’s Section 7AA boys title game at Amsoil Arena: Grand Rapids vs. Duluth East.

Huntsville (3-19-1) hasn’t played since a Feb. 8-9 series at Penn State, and played just six games total in January and February. An update on the Chargers, and their move to the WCHA for 2013-14, will be in Thursday’s News Tribune.

UMD is reporting no injuries following last weekend’s series at Minnesota. The Bulldogs are expecting to have all players available for the Huntsville series, which is followed by the season’s final regular-season series March 8-9 at home with Nebraska-Omaha, No. 22 in PairWise Rankings.

The WCHA Web Media Poll is here.

With St. Cloud State in first place in the WCHA, Pat Reusse of the Minneapolis Star Tribune takes an historical look at the Huskies in a story here.

And the New York Times has a story on senior center Drew LeBlanc of Hermantown and his comeback from a broken leg to help lead the Huskies. The story is here.