On the season:
Dan: 15-11-1 (.574)
Chris: 18-8-1 (.685)
This Week’s Picks:
Friday, October 24 and Saturday, October 25
Rochester Institute of Technology at Air Force
Dan: Last week’s game against BC proved that RIT is in rebuilding mode. On top of it all, they have to head out west to take on an Air Force team that’s going to be mad as hell after losing games in Alaska. Air Force sweeps.
Chris: The Tigers are 0-9 in the first game (or single game) of this series when held in Colorado Springs, and haven’t fared much better the following evening. The Falcons are coming off a pair of discouraging losses in Alaska and I think they’ll rebound to take care of business at home. Air Force sweeps.
Canisius at American International
Dan: AIC is a team that’s better than advertised, but Canisius is proving they’re not quite experiencing a huge drop off after graduating all of those pieces from their finals runs. I think eventually these teams will trend closer, but not yet. Canisius sweeps.
Chris:The Yellow Jackets have played well enough to pick them to win one of these games, but I have been terrible picking splits (twice I’ve picked a split but with the wining team on the wrong nights). So I’m going with Canisius to put together a pair of wins on the road. Canisius sweeps.
Robert Morris at Army
Dan: Army is another Atlantic Hockey team that’s getting better, and their wins the last couple of weeks have been extremely encouraging. But they’re running into a buzz saw of a team that’s playing out of its mind to open up the season. I think Army can eke out a point or two with the right puck hops, but until RMU proves that they’re cooling off, you can’t pick against them. RMU sweeps.
Chris: It’s always tough to pick against Army at home, but RMU is on a roll to open the season. The Black Knights are young and figure to improve over the course of the season, but the Colonials have been there, done that. RMU sweeps.
Niagara at Notre Dame
Dan: Teams at the top of Atlantic Hockey are typically expected to compete and defeat teams from the middle or lower tiers of Hockey East. Unfortunately, Niagara isn’t the top tier yet, and Notre Dame’s playing at home. Notre Dame sweeps.
Chris: With arguably three of their top five players injured (although reports indicate goaltender Jackson Teichroeb may be able to see action), it’s going to be an uphill battle against the the Irish, who are in the midst of an eight-game home stand to open their season. Saturday’s game will be nationally televised on NBC Sports Network. Maybe a big audience will inspire the Purple Eagles, but I’m sticking with the guys in green and gold. Notre Dame sweeps.
Merrimack at Mercyhurst
Dan: Merrimack is undefeated, but to be honest, they haven’t really beaten anyone. Holy Cross isn’t a powerhouse this year, and UConn isn’t exactly Minnesota. Mercyhurst is at home, and like Chris, I’m going all in on Jimmy Sarjeant shutting down the Warrior offense. Mercyhurst sweeps.
Chris: After a split last season at Merrimack, the Warriors return the favor and again I think the Lakers will win at least one of these. They’re just 2-16-1 all-time against teams from Hockey East, but I’m going all in on Mercyhrust goaltender Jimmy Sarjeant to have a big weekend. Mercyhurst sweeps.
Bentley at Rensselaer
Dan: Saturday’s loss to Sacred Heart was like two defeats – the Falcons lost the game, then lost their cool. It overshadowed a solid win on Friday, and the opening night loss where they competed well against Quinnipiac seemed like light years ago. They head to the Capital District to take on a team that’s lost three in a row – to Minnesota and Denver. RPI isn’t as bad as they’re record, but they’re not great. Pair that against Bentley being most dangerous when doubted. RPI wins on Friday. Bentley wins on Saturday.
Chris: This is the matchup I’d most like to see in person. Bentley is coming off a tough loss at in its home opener to Sacred Heart that saw the Falcons finish the game with five players in the penalty box and three more in the dressing room. I think they’ll respond on Friday and give RPI all they can handle, but ultimately will fall in both games. RPI sweeps.
Colgate at Sacred Heart
Dan: Remember last year when ranked-dead-last-in-Division-I Sacred Heart beat #1-ranked UMass-Lowell? Hopefully lightning can strike twice at home, where the Pioneers are running shuttles for students to the games (HINT HINT TO SACRED HEART STUDENTS). I hope the Milford Ice Pavilion is as MIP-y as ever, just so the Raiders can get a great taste of the gritty, municipal rink hockey nature of the AHA. I think there’s too much talent, but SHU’s going to give them a scare, especially early, in the first game. Colgate sweeps.
Chris: This is a nice “get” by Sacred Heart, bringing in the No. 4 team in the nation. SHU can’t be taken lightly, especially at home. Colgate might take some time to adjust to the uniqueness of the Milford Ice Pavilion, but I think the Raiders will find a way to win. Twice. Colgate sweeps.
Friday, October 24 and Sunday, October 26
Holy Cross at Penn State
Dan: I’m sure Chris will make the joke, but the extra day off is because of Penn State-Ohio State football. If the Buckeyes win, they should let David Berard “dot the i” or something. Meanwhile, the Nittany Lions defeat ‘Sader Nation this weekend by a field goal. Penn State sweeps.
Chris: The teams play Friday and Sunday, because football. I hear football is kind of a big deal in Happy Valley. I’m hoping at least one of these games ends in a tie so we’ll have a shootout. OK, not really. My sarcasm is getting the better of me. I’m going with the home team in a pair of close games, which hopefully will be decided in regulation. Penn State sweeps.