Minot, ND – The Minot Minotauros are proud to announce that Kyler Kleven and Owen Baumgartner were both named to the 2019-2020 NAHL All-Rooke First Team. Both players were also named to the Central Division All-Rookie Team and also represented the Tauros at the NAHL Top Prospects Tournament as members of the NAHL Selects Team assembled by NHL Central Scouting at the 2019 Top Prospects Tournament. Full NAHL and Divisional All-Rookie Teams were announced today by the NAHL.
Tauros Head Coach and General Manager Marty Murray said, “having two players named to the Central Division and NAHL All Rookie Teams, makes it a great day for our organization. Both Owen and Kyler were key components to our lineup all year long.”
Kleven led the Tauros in scoring this season posting 53 points in 48 games on 25 goals and 28 assists. His 1.10 points per game give him the best offensive season in Tauros history. He finished just two points behind Miroslav Mucha for most in a single season and undoubtedly would have passed Mucha had the final 10 games of the season not been lost to the COVID-19 crisis. Murray agreed, “Kyler was on the verge of breaking team records for points and goals in a season before it was cut short. He’s the only player in our team history to be over a point per game over the course of a season. He skates well, and he has the ability to make plays or score. Kyler was very consistent throughout the season and in my opinion will secure D1 opportunity in the near future.”
Baumgartner posted four goals and 14 assists for 18 points in 27 games as a 17-year-old. He was second among Tauros blue liners in scoring despite playing the fewest games among regular defenseman. Murray pointed out that the sky is the limit for Baumgartner, “For a 17-year-old, Owen had a very strong season. It’s not easy to play defense in our league at such a young age. Owen demonstrates an exceptional skating ability that will make him a D1 player. What excites me about Owen is that he’s only played defense for two years, so I believe there is a lot of room for growth.”
The Tauro, along with this year’s Bismarck Bobcats who had Will Hillman and Andrew Miller named to the First Team, become the first teams since the 2015-2016 Fairbanks Ice Dogs to have two players named to the NAHL All-Rookie First Team. Past Tauros to make NAHL All-Rookie teams include Nick Strom (2018-2019 Second Team), Alex Adams (2016-2017 Second Team), Blake Lizotte (2014-2015 First Team), Michael Louria (2013-2014 Second Team), and Jon Lizotte (2013-2014 Second Team). The NAHL will be announcing the remaining 2019-2020 awards over the coming days.