Dang you Vermont. OK, the Catamounts weren’t the only team to throw a wrench into my normally solid picks. Vermont has been a weird team. They don’t win, but they have an awful lot of ties, including two last weekend against Hockey East front-runner Boston University. I sure didn’t see Minnesota State sweeping Ohio State either, so last weekend’s overall was 1-6-5 (.291). On the season, I am 37-16-11 (.664). Let’s see if I can get back to my normal winning ways.
Friday-Saturday, Nov. 19-20
Mercyhurst vs. Wayne State: This could be a much closer series than many people think. The Warriors have played some teams tough this season, and mercurial Mercyhurst has varied from world-beater to upset special. Still, I have to go with the offense of Meghan Agosta and Vicki Bendus.
Mercyhurst 4-1, 4-2
Dartmouth vs. Harvard: A home-and-home between the struggling Crimson and one of the perennial powers in the ECAC. This game would have normally been a clash for first place a few years ago, but the Crimson lost to Quinnipiac and managed a tie against Princeton last weekend. I’m calling for the Big Green sweep.
Dartmouth 3-2, 5-3
Ohio State at Minnesota-Duluth: Tough series to pick. Ohio State is dangerous, especially if they come out ready and taking a team seriously, which they will against the Bulldogs. Minnesota-Duluth has looked strong for most of the season, but has had a few hiccups. However, I think the Bulldogs should use home ice to take both games.
Minnesota-Duluth 4-3, 5-2
Minnesota at Minnesota State: As Dan Hickling points out this week in his column, the Mavericks swept a nationally-ranked team for the first time ever on the road last weekend. They’ve got a dismal record against the Gophers, but Minnesota has struggled this season. I’m calling an upset special of a split.
Minnesota 5-2, Minnesota State 3-2
Wisconsin at Robert Morris: This is a mismatch on paper. It probably will be on the ice too. The No. 1 Badgers have far too many weapons to be threatened by the Colonials, even if their battle royal with Minnesota-Duluth looms next weekend. Wisconsin sweep.
Wisconsin 5-1, 6-1
Saturday-Sunday Nov. 20-21
Boston College vs. Boston University: An intriguing matchup between the arch-rivals and Hockey East frontrunners. Both teams may have been guilty of looking ahead to this series last weekend, as BU managed two ties against Vermont and BC only took one point from St. Lawrence. Expect two tight games. I’m calling home ice for each.
Boston University 4-2, Boston College 3-2
Saturday Nov. 20
Quinnipiac at Cornell: The Bobcats have moved into the upper tier of the ECAC teams, but that doesn’t mean they have enough to hang with Cornell, who, barring a challenge from Dartmouth, should run away with the conference this season.
Wednesday, Nov. 24
Dartmouth at Boston College: This one should be a battle between two teams looking to position themselves for postseason play. The Eagles might be ripe for a letdown after their series against Boston University, but Dartmouth will be coming off their own big series with Harvard. I wouldn’t be surprised if this ended in a draw, but I’ll call the Eagles on home ice in a nail-biter.
Boston College 2-1