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Published April 01, 2011, 10:38 PM

Ministers of Defense: Blood and Forbort Playing Role in Unbeaten Streak

After a late-January home loss to Nebraska-Omaha, Sioux coach Dave Hakstol shuffled up his defensive pairings. It led to a pairing of junior Ben Blood and freshman Derek Forbort. That tandem has remained intact and they've played a huge role in UND's fifteen-game unbeaten streak.

After a late-January home loss to Nebraska-Omaha, Sioux coach Dave Hakstol shuffled up his defensive pairings.

It led to a pairing of junior Ben Blood and freshman Derek Forbort. That tandem has remained intact and they've played a huge role in UND's fifteen-game unbeaten streak.

When you're chosen fifteenth by the L.A. Kings in the NHL draft, it's easy to develop some arrogance. But when Derek Forbort arrived on the UND campus, he was welcomed with a reality check.

"I was like, 'why is this guy in the locker room? He needs to be in the gym, because he's so skinny,'" junior Ben Blood said.

"Yeah, I need to put on some weight. But, he's been helping me with that. He's been pushing me hard in the weight room. We always work out together," Derek Forbort said.

"The biggest thing with him is that he needs to be more assertive as a person and to grow up a little bit, and be more of a man," Blood said.

"I think Ben really showed great leadership in working with Derek as a younger player and the two meshed. The chemistry was there immediately," Sioux head coach Dave Hakstol said.

That chemistry is tough to overlook and so are the two players. At 6'4", 235 pounds, Blood is the biggest player on the team, but he still looks up to his defensive partner, who tours at 6'5".

"Well, when ever you do a drill and you look up and see Blood or Forbort, you kind of say 'dang it' they are such big guys and they're always tough to play against," Corban Knight said.

The two stalwarts have made life frustrating for opposing top lines, including Denver's in last weekend's region championship.

The duo will be called upon to do the same at next week's Frozen Four.

Blood leads the nation in plus-minus rating with a plus 33, while Forbort leads Sioux freshmen with 15 points.

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