Nipissing Lakers rookie defenseman Brett Cook threw two punches at a referee during the third period of a season-ending 8-3 loss to the Trois-Rivières Patriotes in the Ontario University Athletics East division semifinal on Feb. 23.
Cook had gotten into a fight with an opponent, but linesman Nicolas Piché stepped in to break it up. A separate fight broke out, and Cook tried to get the referee off of him so he could join the fight. He socked the official twice while trying to free himself.
The Ontario University Athletics association investigated and ruled Wednesday that Cook can no longer play in the league.
“Upon review by the OUA men’s hockey review panel, consisting of the OUA men’s hockey convenor and a representative of the OUA Sport Committee, Brett Cook has been banned from participating in any OUA sanctioned competition for the remainder of his university career,” stated the release from the OUA, via The North Bay Nugget.
Cook, 21, has at least apologized.
“What I did was wrong, plain and simple,” said Cook, via The Nugget. “My actions were unacceptable and I take full responsibility. My teammates, coaches and I are thankful that Mr. Piché was not hurt. I am deeply sorry for my actions, for embarrassing my university, the OUA, the CIS and the dignity of the game of hockey and I fully accept the sanctions determined by the OUA.”
Cook previously played five seasons in the OHL before joining the OUA. He had seven points and 62 penalty minutes this season.