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Minnesota State High School League bars Waseca hockey players from wearing jerseys honoring recovering officer

Updated: January 24, 2020 01:43 PM

High school hockey players in Waseca weren't able to wear game jerseys made in honor of a local police officer critically wounded in the line of duty. 

The Waseca Bluejays wanted to wear jerseys with recovering officer Arik Matson's badge number on them Thursday night at the team's home game against Luverne.

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However, in a tweet, the team stated the Minnesota State High School League told players the uniforms would violate its policy and wouldn't be allowed.

Some took to social media to express their disappointment in the league's decision.

The league issued the following statement Friday: 

"The Minnesota State High School League and Waseca Public Schools deeply appreciate the involvement of the Waseca community, its boys and girls hockey programs and other athletic programs in honoring and supporting Officer Matson and the Waseca Police Department. The MSHSL and Waseca High School administration have been in communication this past week in identifying ways in which appropriate recognition can be demonstrated. This includes following the National Federation of High Schools uniform rules and policies which limits the size of alterations to commemorate individuals or events within competition. 

"Waseca also appreciates the support and creativity of Gemini Athletic in supplying commemorative jerseys for this important endeavor. The MSHSL will continue to work with all member schools and support them in ways to honor and commemorate individuals in their communities."

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Rebecca Omastiak

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