WATCH: Get to know UND forward Jackson Keane

Q&A with UND freshman Jackson Keane Q. Most first-career goals aren't as pretty as the one you scored Friday night. Is that a move you practiced or did you just wing it in the moment? A. Honestly, it was pretty just in-the-moment. I don't pra...

Jackson Keane celebrates a highlight-reel goal against Alaska Anchorage last season. Photo by Nick Nelson / Grand Forks Herald
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Q&A with UND freshman Jackson Keane

Q. Most first-career goals aren’t as pretty as the one you scored Friday night. Is that a move you practiced or did you just wing it in the moment?
A. Honestly, it was pretty just in-the-moment. I don't practice that too often. I saw the D-man go down and out of habit, I just did it.
Q. When you were deciding on a college, you were debating between UND and Minnesota Duluth. What made you choose North Dakota?
A. With Duluth, there are a few ties with my dad. Scott Sandelin played with my dad in Montreal. Derek Plante, who used to work at Duluth, played with my dad. So there was a little bit of a connection there. But obviously when I came to UND, it was pretty tough to turn down. Coming to a game -- it was actually against Duluth -- UND won in overtime. That was probably the thing that hooked me was coming to The Ralph and seeing the games and stuff. I don’t regret the decision at all.
Q. How do you describe your playing style?
A. I think I’m a smaller player. I like to bring energy, a little bit of skill as well, but I think hard work and energy are the two terms to describe it.
Q. What is one skill or talent you wish you had?
A. Maybe super strength, then it would be a little easier on the ice.
Q. What is your favorite thing about Grand Forks besides The Ralph? Any favorite food places?
A. Sickies. Some of the freshmen have been going to Sickies during the week. Kind of a pregame ritual.
Q. Being from Winnipeg, does your family get a lot of chances to come down and watch you play?
A. They’ve been here a few times. My dad is traveling a lot, so that’s tough. But my mom came down Saturday night and got to see me play, so that’s pretty cool.
Q. Your dad, Mike, is a three-time Stanley Cup champion, currently working in player development with the Winnipeg Jets. Do you have any favorite stories of his playing career that he told you?
A. I don’t have one that sticks out in general. Any time he talks about his Stanley Cup parties and stories, those are pretty cool. I think maybe the one would be when he had his jersey retired in Manitoba, my whole family got to go on the ice and be a part of the ceremony. I’d say that’s one my most memorable things from his career.
Q. Last season you played with Penticton in the BCHL with Adam Scheel and Jonny Tychonick. Is that nice to have familiar faces here?
A. Yeah, it definitely makes things easier. I room with Adam Scheel. That’s a little bit of an easy transition. If you look through our team, I think most of the guys played at Penticton and there are a few more coming next year. It’s always cool to have guys who you played with before. I think it helped with our confidence and things like that.
Q. You played five years of junior hockey, you came here as a 21-year-old freshman and you’re living in the dorms like everyone else. What’s that experience like?
A. I think we were all saying it the other day. I think I’m probably the oldest person in the dorms including the RAs and everything. I don’t think about that too often. It’s fun to be with the guys. I’m a little older.
Q. You’re like dad.
A. Yeah, I go home and watch the kids here and there. No, it’s been fun. They’re pretty mature guys. They don't seem like they’re 18 or 19. They make it easy and I don’t think about it too often.
Q. I know you have a large family dog. What type of dog do you have and how much does it weigh?
A. My dog, Phil, he’s an English Mastiff. I think he’s 145 pounds or something like that. He’s a big boy.
Q. Why the name Phil?
A. My dad wanted to name him Bob. I think he always liked the human names for the big dogs. I think Phil suits him well.
Q. He looks like a Phil.
A. He acts like a Phil. He looks like a Phil.
Q. I heard he’s a bit of a celebrity.
A. Yeah, he’s in The Dog’s Purpose 2, coming out in April, I think it is. They filmed it in Winnipeg and I think they needed an English Mastiff. It was one of the dogs from the books. We got him at the Humane Society in Winnipeg. Whoever the lady was there remembered Phil and he went for a couple of casting calls. He went and auditioned and got the part. He’s a little bit of a movie star now.
Q. Your dog is almost as famous as your dad.
A. Yeah, I’m like the least famous person in my family now.

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