Quinnipiac men’s hockey celebrated at White House ‘College Athlete Day’


Jack Spiegel

Quinnipiac University men’s hockey went 34-4-3 en route to the NCAA Division I national championship, which they won in 3-2 in overtime against the University of Minnesota on April 8.

Cat Murphy and Cameron Levasseur

WASHINGTON — The Quinnipiac University men’s hockey team joined 46 other national championship-winning teams from across the country in the first “College Athlete Day” at the White House Monday morning.

Vice President Kamala Harris and recently-appointed NCAA President Charlie Baker spoke to a crowd of more than 1,000 athletes, coaches and team officials from all three NCAA divisions about the societal importance of college athletics.

“You remind all of us of what we can achieve when we work hard and strive with ambition,” Harris said, commending the athletes on their commitment to their respective sports.. “All of you represent the face of our country and our communities … you remind us that we are truly strong together, that our nation is strong.”

Harris introduced Logan Eggleston, a now-graduated women’s volleyball player from the University of Texas and the 2023 AVCA Division I Player of the Year, to present the vice president with a commemorative national championship trophy.

“Athletics unites us — people with so many differences who want to accomplish the same goal,” Eggleston said. “It can bring people together from all backgrounds and identities; in athletics, those things don’t matter.”

Although President Joe Biden was initially slated to host the June 12 ceremony on the White House’s South Lawn, the 46th president underwent a root canal Monday morning and could not attend the event.

Team captain Zach Metsa represented the Bobcats on stage at the event, exchanging a high five with Baker.  The former Massachusetts governor turned NCAA President was in attendance when Quinnipiac claimed the Belpot Trophy in Belfast, Northern Ireland last November. 

NCAA President Charlie Baker high-fives Quinnipiac men’s hockey captain Zach Metsa during the “College Athlete Day” celebration at the White House on June 12. (Jack Spiegel)

The White House marked yet another noteworthy stop on the national championship tour for the Bobcats, who have previously made appearances at Fenway Park, the New York Stock Exchange and the Connecticut State House. 

“It’s crazy,” rising graduate student defenseman Jayden Lee said. “It’s just really special and goes to show how much winning a national championship meant to Quinnipiac.”

The Bobcats attended the ceremony at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. just days after Quinnipiac Athletics announced that the team had accepted the president’s invitation.​​“We are most grateful to the governor, and to our Congressional delegation for advocating for this visit after a season that has brought so much pride to the Bobcat community, and to the entire state of Connecticut,” Quinnipiac University President Judy Olian wrote in the June 7 release.