The governors in the six New England states and in New Jersey have suspended interstate youth hockey competitions through the end of the year because of rising coronavirus cases.

The suspension, which starts Saturday, affects public schools, private schools and youth leagues.

It does not apply to collegiate hockey teams, professional hockey teams, or the U.S. national hockey teams, which are still subject to existing COVID-19 safety protocols.

The governors said in a statement Thursday as case numbers increase in many states across the country, it is critical that neighboring states coordinate a regional approach to limit further community spread of the virus.

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