Whitehead agrees with decision on icing rule

Posted July 14, 2010, at 9:58 p.m.

   University of Maine men’s hockey coach Tim Whitehead said he was OK with the NCAA Ice Hockey Rules Committee’s decision to pull the proposal that would have forbid teams from icing the puck while shorthanded and he liked the awarding of the 2013 and 2014 Frozen Fours to Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, respectively.
   Pittsburgh and Philadelphia will be first-time hosts and the Frozen Fours will be held in the NHL rinks of the Penguins and Flyers, respectively.
   Pittsburgh’s Consol Enegry Center is near completion and is expected to open in August while the Flyers play in the Wells Fargo Center which first opened in 1996.
   The other finalists were Boston, St. Louis and Washington D.C., which hosted Frozen Fours in 2004, 2007 and 2009, respectively.
   The icing proposal would have meant that if teams iced the puck while shorthanded, the faceoff would come back into their zone and they couldn’t replace their penalty-killers.
   It was met with loud opposition from the coaches leading to it being scrapped although it will be used on an experimental basis in exhibition games.
   “You’ve always been able to ice the puck [without penalty] while you were shorthanded. I’m comfortable with that,” said Whitehead.
   He said he likes having two more Frozen Fours in the east and there is “certainly a great tradition of hockey in those areas [with the NHL’s Penguins and Flyers]. Hopefully, college hockey will expand in those areas.”
   He said NHL franchises that have hosted Frozen Fours “have rolled out the red carpet” for it and he is encouraged by the fact NHL franchises are bidding on Frozen Fours with more regularity.
   “That’s a good sign. The Frozen Fours have become very desirable tournaments to bring to NHL cities. They’re quite interested in it,” said Whitehead.
   The 2011 Frozen Four will be held at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, home of the NHL’s Minnesota Wild, and the 2012 event will be at the St. Pete-Times Forum in Tampa, Fla., home of the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning.
  
   Husson loses lacrosse coach
   After guiding the Husson University men’s lacrosse team in its first two years, Jeremy Mattoon has announced he will become the head coach at Hood College.
   “We are sorry to see Jeremy Mattoon leave Husson. Jeremy has done a great job building a winning program in just two years,” Husson athletic director Bob Reasso said. “We will be very aggressive in pursuit of a head coach. We believe we have a wonderful job and opportunity for the right person. We have an outstanding team returning, including the NCAA Division III’s leading scorer, Ben Landry, and we are excited to build upon the successful foundation Jeremy created.”
   Mattoon compiled an overall 14-17 record with the Eagles a berth in the North Atlantic Conference semifinals last season.
   “I’m very proud to have built a successful program here at Husson. I want to thank Husson and the student-athletes for the opportunity to lead this talented group of young men,” Mattoon said. “I will work with Bob Reasso in the search for the next head coach. Knowing Bob, he will find the right person for this position and I know the program will move from strength to strength. It’s a great testament to the players that we built a winning lacrosse program in two years and I appreciate all their efforts.”

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