Danbury forward Kleinhans makes NCAA DI commitment
The Danbury Jr. Hat Tricks of the North American Hockey League (NAHL) are pleased to announce that forward and NAPHL grad Jason Kleinhans has officially announced his commitment to play NCAA Division I hockey for Air Force Academy Falcons in Atlantic Hockey for the 2021-22 season.
“Air Force is a place I’ve always wanted to go,” Kleinhans noted. “I was fortunate enough to get the offer, and didn’t really have any hesitation with the response. Easy decision.”
Kleinhans, a 20-year old Herndon, Virginia native, has been a terrific spark plug for the Jr. Hat Tricks’ top six, posting four goals and 10 assists over 25 games. His speed and his playmaking ability have especially shone on the powerplay, as he has notched three goals and four assists on the man advantage.
He is also something of a local product as well, having graduated from Kent School in Connecticut last year. During the 2016-17 season, Kleinhans played a full season in the NAPHL for the Washington Little Capitals 16U team, recording six points in 18 NAPHL games.
“I think at a younger age, I’ve looked at [military service] like it would be something cool,” Kleinhans explained. “And I’ve finally got the opportunity.”
Air Force officers incur a four-year service commitment, though Kleinhans has particular interest in becoming a pilot- a 10-year commitment from the date training is completed, per the United States Air Force website.
“I want to be the same player there as I am here,” he said. “Fast, on pucks, hard to play against. I don’t want to switch up my game too much.”
Kleinhans is the 10th Jr. Hat Tricks player to earn a commitment to an NCAA Division I school, and the fourth to announce a collegiate decision during the 2020-21 campaign. He is also the second Jr. Hat Trick to commit to a service academy, with forward Jake Hewitt joining the Army Black Knights next season.