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Moorhead boys hockey coach, players suspended after hazing investigation

Though suspensions were issued, questions remain regarding a hazing complaint made by a parent about the Moorhead boys hockey team.

Coach Dave Morinville and an unidentified number of his players were disciplined, the district said in a release on Friday.

Morinville was suspended for one game for "failing to provide adequate supervision of student-athletes," while his players were "disciplined according to school district policy and Minnesota State High School League bylaws."

MSHSL bylaws state a student "shall lose eligibility in a sport for the next two consecutive interscholastic contests or two weeks of that season, whichever is greater."

The Moorhead School District's policy lists hazing under its prohibiting intimidation and bullying policy section. It states that the consequences "may range from behavioral interventions up to and including suspension and/or expulsion."

Yet the guidelines do not state how many day(s) the suspension would last.

Moorhead athletic director Don Hulbert and Moorhead School District communications coordinator Pam Gibb would not provide further comment.

Morinville declined to comment.

The district completed its investigation on Friday, but not much was said, leading to the following questions:

What happened to provoke the investigation?

Did the incident happen on or off school grounds?

How many student(s) were hazed?

How many players were suspended?

When did the event take place?

What is certain is the investigation was filed just after Moorhead's Christmas break, which ended Monday, according to the district's calendar.

Hulbert told The Forum on Wednesday a parent filed the complaint and an investigation was launched.

Hulbert and Moorhead High principal Gene Boyle said they spoke with coaches, parents and players.

"We talked to those who were affected and those who were bystanders," Hulbert said earlier in the week. "In any situation like this, we are ready to accumulate input from those meetings."

Morinville and the suspended players would miss today's game at Minnetonka if the suspensions begin immediately.

In lieu of that, the suspended players would miss a Section Class 2A game at St. Cloud Tech, along with games at Wayzata and East Grand Forks.

The earliest the suspended players could return is Jan. 22 when Moorhead hosts rival Warroad.

Morinville and his whole team were allowed to practice and play during the week while the investigation was being conducted.

Moorhead (6-3-1) won both games it played this week and has won four of its last five games.