Latvian goalie Patriks Berzins, who was anticipated to play on the College of Maine this season till the NCAA dominated that he was ineligible, has regained all of his eligibility and can return to UMaine subsequent fall.
He’s presently enjoying for the Madison Capitols in america Junior Hockey League.
After the NCAA dominated that numerous Latvian gamers, together with Berzins, have been deemed to be professionals due to the league they performed in, the College of Maine appealed the lifetime ban for Berzins. The NCAA granted him beginner standing in August however nonetheless dolled out a 20-game suspension for Berzins’ time enjoying in a Latvian junior league.
Earlier this month, UMaine obtained a letter from the NCAA stating that Berzins gained’t have to take a seat out any video games and is eligible instantly.
The NCAA dominated, after additional investigation, that the Latvian league Berzins performed in wasn’t an expert league, mentioned Samantha Hegmann-Cautious, UMaine’s affiliate athletic director for compliance and senior girl administrator.
“I believe the NCAA talked to a board member from the Latvian Hockey Federation,” mentioned Hegmann-Cautious, who identified that Berzins was one among a number of Latvian student-athletes to get their full eligibility restored by the NCAA.
However UMaine head coach Ben Barr had determined after the 20-game suspension was imposed in August that the crew didn’t have time to attempt to get it lowered. Barr introduced in Swedish goalie Albin Boija to hitch seniors Victor Ostman and Connor Androlewicz.
“We have been very lucky that Patriks nonetheless had one other yr of eligibility remaining in juniors,” Barr mentioned.
If he didn’t, he may need needed to return to Latvia.
With Ostman and Androlewicz leaving after this season, UMaine can have a goalie with a yr underneath his belt in Boija and Berzins will be a part of him. Barr will even be bringing in a 3rd goalkeeper.
Berzins, who performed for Latvia within the World Junior Championships, was 11-3-1 with a 2.66 goals-against common and a .890 save share for Tri-Metropolis within the USHL final season.
Berzins shall be aware of a number of of his UMaine teammates since he labored out with the crew in July and August throughout its six-week non-compulsory exercises in Orono.