Another suit filed seeking to reinstate UND women’s hockey
FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Four recent North Dakota high school graduates have filed a discrimination lawsuit seeking to reinstate the University of North Dakota women’s ice hockey program, three years after a judge dismissed a similar federal complaint by former Fighting Hawks players.
The suit filed Thursday against the North Dakota University System alleges that UND violated Title IX laws that prohibit women from being treated differently because of gender. The women said they want to attend UND and play hockey but the decision to drop the program in 2017 has deprived them of that that opportunity.
“UND’s elimination of its women’s ice hockey program but not its men’s ice hockey program discriminates against women and denies women equality of athletic opportunity,” the suit states.
The lawsuit was filed by Emily Becker, 19, of Grand Forks; Calli Forsberg, 20, of Devils Lake; Morgan Stenseth, 19, of Grand Forks; and Maya Tellman, 18, of Grand Forks. As was the case with the suit filed in 2018 by 11 former UND players, it seeks class action status for others who are “similarly situated.”
UND spokesman David Dodds said Friday the school had no comment about the suit “at this time.”
The Fighting Hawks women’s hockey team was ranked as high as No. 6 in the nation in their final season. The program produced many standout players including twin sisters and U.S. Olympic stars Monique and Jocelyne Lamoureux and several other Olympians.
The school cited budget woes when it dropped the program.