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Leaders with Duluth Public Schools say they are outlining a plan to "address sportsmanship" after last week's violent attack during a high school hockey game.

During the Feb. 9 game, a member of the Duluth East team cross-check his Denfeld opponent, knocking him to the ground. The Duluth East player then repeatedly hits him in the head while on the ice.

After referees pulled the player away, the Denfeld player is seen laying motionless. Here's video of the incident:

This week, Duluth Public Schools issued a statement on behalf of the activities directors at both schools.

Tom Pearson (Denfeld) and Shawn Roed (East) are working with their coaching staffs "to develop an action plan to address sportsmanship within our district’s athletic programs," the statement says. Step one is a training program to help those coaches be more "proactive," while providing them with tools "to better handle day to day operations and how to be a positive influence in their athletes’ lives."

But longer-term, Pearson and Roed are collaborating with the district to establish "sportsmanship expectations" — behaviors expected from student-athletes, as well as a list of specific consequences for unsportsmanlike conduct. These consequences will be on top of whatever the MSHSL and student code of conduct already lay out. 

The district hopes to have these sportsmanship expectations in place by the time the 2022-23 school year begins.

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“As a district we continually work to promote a positive culture within our athletics programs to ensure good sportsmanship,” Roed said in the statement. “We certainly hope this is reinforced in our words and actions by all of our athletic teams now and in the future.”

Said Pearson: “As an educational based athletic program, we are committed to the health and safety of our students on the field of play as well as their mental health off the field. We understand that our students will make mistakes, and it is up to us to support all parties to ensure that they are safe and supported.”

FOX 21 had reported the Denfeld player was not hospitalized was able to go home that night.

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