Obama to get UMD jersey

A Minnesota Duluth traveling party of 24 is expected to attend an NCAA Division I Champions Celebration on Monday afternoon at the White House in Washington, D.C.

The Bulldogs, who won the 2010 women’s hockey title, are to fly from Minneapolis at 6 a.m. Monday and be part of a 4 p.m. outdoor event hosted by President Obama. UMD returns home at 6 a.m. Tuesday, said coach Shannon Miller.

Twenty members of UMD’s 2009-10 team, along with coaches Miller, Laura Schuler and Michelle McAteer (now head coach at Augsburg College), along with Chancellor Lendley “Lynn” Black are to make the trip. It will mark the fifth White House appearance for the women’s hockey program.

“This is a remarkable honor for all of us and there’s a great deal of positive energy from all of our players. They’re excited about having such an opportunity,” Miller said Tuesday.

Two senior defensemen from last season are traveling the furthest — Jaime Rasmussen from home in Garden Grove, Calif., and Sarah Murray from Switzerland, where she’s teaching and playing hockey. Emmanuelle Blais, a senior forward and team MVP from last season, is coming in from home in LaSalle, Quebec.

The Bulldogs are bringing a gift for the president — a maroon UMD hockey jersey with the name Obama on the back and No. 10, which notes the year.

It’s believed championship teams in all Division I sports for men and women, except football and basketball, will be recognized at Monday’s event. The tradition was started by President George W. Bush.

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