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Nat'l Organization Adopts Minnesota's High School Hockey Rules

Updated: 05/21/2014 7:35 AM
Created: 05/20/2014 5:36 PM KSTP.com
By: Jessica Miles

For 2 1/2 years, the Jablonski family has been working tirelessly to change the way Minnesota high school hockey is played and officiated.

Their efforts paid off here at home, and now stricter penalties are being adopted nationwide.

Jack Jablonski does 11 hours of physical therapy four days a week at the Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute. He's working to regain feeling in his lower body.

A hit from behind in a hockey game his sophomore year sent him head first into the boards, leaving him with a spinal cord injury.

During his rehab, he's never stopped thinking about the game; how it's played and changes that could make it better.

"It's definitely a positive step forward. When it comes to safety and how the game is played, so I am very excited," Jack said.

Minnesota adopted rule changes in the 2011-2012 season.

Boarding and checking from behind are now five minute major penalties, which is up from two minute minors.

And there's also a 10 minute misconduct penalty for checking from behind anywhere on the ice.

Tuesday, the National Federation of State High School Associations adopted the same rules.

Jack's mom Leslie Jablonski says the changes are needed. "Hockey is all about skill, so when you have violence and reckless nature involved, things like this happen and that had to be stopped," she said.

Jack wraps up his high school career Wednesday, graduation is next week, and then it’s off to college at USC in California.

The Jablonski's say they're ecstatic Minnesota led the way making these national changes.

"We're thrilled it’s nationwide now, and we applaud Minnesota hockey for starting it and sticking with it," says Leslie.

The new rules will take effect with the 2014-2015 season.

Photo: KSTP/File

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