MEN'S HOCKEY: Hans Martin Ulvebne set to become Beavers' first Norwegian-born skater

Hans Martin Ulvebne, who recently committed to the Beavers, could become the first player from Norway on the Bemidji State men's hockey roster in its Division I era.

A hockey player with a red, white, and black jersey skates around the rink and looks towards the camera.
Hans Martin Ulvebne skates in a game for the Corpus Christi IceRays of the NAHL.
Courtesy / Amanda Martinez

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Bemidji State typically has a handful of international skaters on its men's hockey roster, but — at least to this point — there's never been a player from Norway.

Since the beginning of the Division I era for the Beavers, the program has welcomed numerous hockey players from countries like Finland and Sweden. The squad even has a forward from Poland this season. But still none from Norway.

That's about to change in the near future.

Hans Martin Ulvebne, born and raised in Oslo, Norway, recently announced his commitment to BSU. The 18-year-old is currently playing with the Corpus Christi IceRays in the North American Hockey League (NAHL) and leads his team in points with 27 in 34 games.

Ulvebne didn't come from a hockey family in Norway — neither of his parents played the sport. When he was around the age of five or six, his father took him skating. After a handful of tries, Ulvebne took a liking to it and started to play with friends. He also grew up skiiing and playing tennis, soccer, and golf, all of which he still likes a bit of in his free time.


In Norway, the 6-foot forward competed for the Vålerenga U16 and U18 teams before making the move to the U.S.

Ulvebne suited up for Selects Academy in South Kent, Conn., for the 2019-20 season before joining the Bishop Kearney Selects program in Rochester, N.Y., for two seasons. Over the years, he has also suited up in a couple of games on the international stage, representing Norway at the U16 and U18 levels.

Moving to the United States wasn't a particularly easy transition for the Oslo native. He knew a little English from school, but speaking it all day was tough when he first arrived. After living here for a few years, he says it's no longer an issue.

Ulvebne's family has remained in Norway throughout his time in America, but he tries to go back home a few times each year around the holidays and in the offseason.

The 183-pound forward put up good numbers in 2021-22 with the Bishop Kearney Selects 18U squad — 72 points in 56 games — and ultimately signed a tender with Corpus Christi.

This season, his first full year of junior hockey, Ulvebne leads his team in assists (19) and total points (27) after 34 games played. He has picked up a couple points on special teams, including a power-play goal, five power-play assists and a shorthanded goal.

Collegiate programs have been reaching out to the Norwegian over the past few years, but Bemidji State started to come into the picture over the last couple of months.

"Benidji State was kind of always at the top for me," Ulvebne said. "I knew that it was a really good program."


The international skater hasn't visited the campus yet, but he was recently able to take a virtual tour and enjoyed what he saw. Even though he hasn't been to Bemidji, he does have some familiarity with the state of Minnesota after visiting for the NAHL Showcase in Blaine.

If Ulvebne stays committed to the program and comes to campus in a few seasons, Bemidji State will have its first-ever player from Norway on the Division I men's hockey roster sooner rather than later. The forward plans on bringing his speed, strong hockey sense and playmaking abilities to the Beavers — likely in the fall of 2024.

Ulvebne is averaging 0.84 points per game in the NAHL and hopes to keep improving his game throughout his junior hockey experience.

"My goal is to play professional and I've always wanted to play college hockey, and it's a big accomplishment to me to be able to do that," he said.

Sydney Wolf is a reporter for The Rink Live, primarily covering youth and high school hockey. She joined the team in November of 2021 and graduated from St. Cloud State University with a degree in Mass Communications and a minor in Writing and Rhetoric Studies.
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