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UND hockey reinstates suspended player

Matt Frattin

GRAND FORKS -- UND forward Matt Frattin, who was suspended indefinitely by the team in August, has re-joined the Sioux and may play in the second half of the season.

Frattin spent the last four months at home in Alberta after the team temporarily dismissed him for a pair of alcohol-related run-ins with police. He re-enrolled in classes on Monday morning and returned to practice later in the day.

Frattin, a junior, will travel with the team to Notre Dame's Shillelagh Tournament this weekend in suburban Chicago, but coach Dave Hakstol says it's too early to say whether he'll play.

"To this point, he's done all the right things," Hakstol said. "He's eligible to play. I'm approaching it one day forward at a time. He needs to continue doing a good job day by day. If he continues to do the right things day by day, there will be another opportunity for him.

"I'm really impressed with the way Matt has handled everything right from Day One. He had other options. He probably chose the most difficult path in deciding to return to the University of North Dakota. He decided to do whatever it took."

Frattin, a fourth-round pick of the Toronto Maple Leafs, had 13 goals and 25 points last season. He was the team's third-leading goal scorer behind Ryan Duncan and Chris VandeVelde.

During the past few months, Frattin has been working out and skating near Edmonton.

"It's tough to do things on your own, but he found a way," Hakstol said. "It's very apparent to me that he's done. . . not a little bit of work. . . but a lot of work. He's in very good condition judging by the two practices we've had -- which were pretty competitive practices."

Frattin is expected to address the media on Wednesday morning.

When Frattin was dismissed following a driving under the influence arrest, UND said that his status may be revisited. He has been reinstated for two main reasons.

"The program comes first," Hakstol said, "and this is about having a good outcome for a good, young man that needed to get himself back on track."