March 18, 2008 PRINT Bookmark and Share

Pohl Out of ICU

CHN Staff Report

Minnesota forward Tom Pohl is out of intensive care and is in fair condition. According to Minnesota coach Don Lucia, he is expected to be released from the hospital in 3-4 days.

Pohl suffered a fractured skull and bleeding on the brain after hitting his head into the boards following a hit during Sunday's Minnesota-Minnesota State playoff game. Pohl was hit by the Mavericks' Jason Wiley as he was already hunched and falling, and the hit knocked his helmet off. Pohl's head then hit into the boards, and he was already unconscious before he hit the ice.

Pohl was immobilized and taken off on a stretcher, and went to the hospital where he had the emergency brain surgery.

The biggest concern was further bleeding on the brain, but since the surgery, there have not been any complications.

"I saw him yesterday afternoon, and he was talkative," said Lucia. "The next 24 hours are going to be important to make sure that there is no more bleeding, and that has not happened."

Tom Pohl was taken off the ice on a stretcher Sunday. (photo: Mankato Free Press)

Tom Pohl was taken off the ice on a stretcher Sunday. (photo: Mankato Free Press)

Addressing the potential reaction to Wiley, Lucia said that the team, and fans, should not hold any ill will against him.

"Tommy was in a vulnerable position when he was hit, and I think a major cause of the injury is because his helmet came off and he hit the boards and was unconscious when he hit the ice," Lucia said.

WCHA commissioner Bruce McLeod said Wiley, who was tossed from the game for a hit from behind, felt badly.

"The young man that was DQ'd, Jason Wiley, is having a very, very tough time with the situation," McLeod said. "We lost touch with him yesterday for a little while and we were very concerned about that.

"He's very frightened and feels terrible about the whole situation."

As for Pohl, Lucia said the prognosis looks good.

"He did look good and sound good when I talked to him yesterday even though he had just come out of surgery earlier in the day," Lucia said.

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