UM Eliminated From NCAA Ice Hockey Tournament Due To COVID Protocols
3/26/2021 1:05:00 pm
// Kurt Svoboda
FARGO, North Dakota – The NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Committee, in consultation with the NCAA Medical Advisory Group, announced on Friday (March 26) that the No. 8 ranked and No. 2 ice hockey team from the University of Michigan will not be able to participate. participate in the 2020-21 NCAA Championship due to positive COVID-19 test results within the UM Level I testing pool.
Michigan (15-10-1) was scheduled to face No. 9 ranked and No. 3 seed Minnesota Duluth, the two-time defending national champion, in a Midwest Regional semifinal Friday afternoon at Scheels Arena in Fargo, North Dakota. The game will be considered no contest as Minnesota Duluth will advance to the next round of competition.
“I am devastated for these players. These student-athletes have done a wonderful job all year making sacrifices to get to this point in the year,” said Graham Family Head men’s ice hockey coach. Mel pearson. “It’s unfortunate. I don’t fully understand the final decision, but I have to respect it.”
“They have given so much and being taken away from this opportunity, it is hard to swallow. I know it is just a game, but it is extremely important for these young people. It has been two years in a row now that we have been denied an opportunity to compete in the national championship, it has not yet been fully assimilated.
“I want to wish all the teams to keep playing good health, good luck and stay safe. Lastly, I want to make sure to thank the Michigan Hockey fans. I have been impressed by the number of people who care and deeply support this program. It really means a lot to me and our players. We will return. Michigan Hockey will return. Stronger and ready to start next year. “
The UM student-athletes and ice hockey staff had remained on the daily testing protocol since the conclusion of the Big Ten Tournament and were preparing for Friday’s competition when the NCAA notified them.
This season’s NCAA Tournament offering was 38th overall in UM history, which is the most tied with Minnesota. The Wolverines are 53-30 in all-time NCAA tournaments, including a Division I record in nine national championships.