Hockey Games to Watch

Story posted February 5, 2016 in Sports, CommRadio by Tom Shively

The first weekend in February is a huge weekend for college hockey with four matchups between ranked teams. We can look forward to the Beanpot championship between the two premier programs in the Boston area as well as all four of the top teams in the ECAC in action against fellow top 20 teams.

Beanpot Championship Game: No. 4 Boston College vs. No. 9 Boston University

For the 23rd straight year, either BC or BU will win the Beanpot. The Eagles handled No. 7 Harvard 3-2 in the first semifinal on Monday while the defending champion Terriers downed Northeastern 3-1 in the nightcap. The two teams have met already in a home-and-home series this season with BC tallying three points. Things could have gone a lot better for BU last time around considering they gave up either the game-winner or game-tying goal in the third periods of both games.

No. 7 Harvard vs. No. 11 Yale

Despite a lackluster performance in the Beanpot, the Crimson has a chance to bounce back and stay in second place in the ECAC. They face the Bulldogs for one game this weekend before facing Brown the next day. The last time these two teams met, they played to a 2-2 tie as Yale senior Joe Snively scored the game-tying goal with 35.8 seconds remaining. Sophomore Merrick Madsen has been stellar in net for Harvard, ranking in the top 10 nationally in goals allowed (1.85) and save percentage (.936).

No. 17 Cornell vs. No. 1 Quinnipiac

Having been the top team in the PairWise rankings for over three months, Quinnipiac finally has earned some recognition from the voters as they are now atop the USCHO poll for the third straight week. They haven’t lost a game since December, and they look to continue that streak as Cornell comes to town. Goaltender Mitch Gillam has been solid all year for the Big Red, surrendering only 1.98 goals per game and registering a .928 save percentage. But he will have his hands full come puck drop, as he will have to deal with the three-headed monster at forward for Quinnipiac. Sam Anas, Travis St. Denis, and Tim Clifton have combined for 43 goals on the year and all three average over 1.1 points per game.

No. 19 Bowling Green vs. No. 18 Minnesota State Mankato

The Falcons are one of the hottest teams in the country coming into this series, going 11-3-3 in their last 17 contests.  The Mavericks moved up one spot in the polls after a nice showing in the North Star College Cup last weekend, outlasting No. 20 Minnesota 3-2. If Minnesota State expects to pick up some points in this series, they will have to draw first blood. The Mavericks are 7-1-4 in games in which they have scored first while only 7-8-1 in games in which they conceded the first goal.

Tom Shively is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism.  You can contact him at shivelyt97@gmail.com.