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March 11, 2014 E-MAIL PRINT Bookmark and Share

Yale Gets White House Reception

CHN Staff Report

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (front, center), a Yale graduate, poses with the 2013 NCAA champion Bulldog hockey team.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (front, center), a Yale graduate, poses with the 2013 NCAA champion Bulldog hockey team.

WASHINGTON, D.C. — After 11 months, Yale's hockey team got its chance to be honored at the White House by President Barack Obama for winning the 2013 national championship. Yale was there as part of "national champions day."

All members of the current team — plus five of the six seniors from last spring — attended the festivities that began with a private bus tour of the city. The Bulldogs had their own two-deck bus for the two-hour tour.

Team arrived at the White House at 2 p.m., and eventually was able to take a tour of the East Wing.

Before the president arrived, the team met with Secretary of State John Kerry, a former multi-sport athlete at Yale. He spent time discussing the college hockey playoffs, foreign policy, the White House and old customs, like a medallion with a U.S. government emblem on it.

Kerry, who dropped the ceremonial puck at Yale's game against Harvard at Madison Square Garden earlier this year, presented Yale coach Keith Allain with a U.S. Military “challenge coin,” something that at one time might go to the winner of a battle. He then arranged for Yale's players to take a joint photo with the national champion Southern California women's water polo team.

President Obama arrived soon thereafter, and interacted with all of the teams.

The teams filed out of the White House and onto the South Lawn for a post-photo session reception. After the last team had made its way out of the White House, the president delivered a speech that touched on a number of relevant topics.

The graduated Bulldogs who were able to attend included Josh Balch, Jeff Malcolm, Nick Maricic, Colin Dueck and Antoine Laganiere.

Yale plays at Quinnipiac, the team it defeated in last year's national championship game, this weekend in a best-of-3 ECAC quarterfinal series.

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