MINNEAPOLIS — The 2002-2003 season continued its topsy turvy tribulations, as St. Norbert, with a perfect 7-0-0 record, topped this week’s USCHO.com Division III Men’s Poll by the narrowest of margins: a single point. St. Norbert has handled threats from ranked opponents each of the last two weekends, earning one-goal victories against No. 6 Wis.-Superior and No. 10 Wis.-Stevens Point.
Norwich, which had earned every No. 1 ranking this season prior to this week, fell to No. 2 and still has not played a game this season. The Cadets play an exhibition game this Friday, and officially gets underway on November 22 against Connecticut College. Norwich still received more first-place votes, seven to St. Norbert’s three.
RIT, also perfect at 5-0-0, was just seven points behind Norwich, settling in at No. 3 following a two-win weekend. The Tigers fought off a challenge from conference opponent, No. 12 Manhattanville, in a 3-1 contest Friday night, which was deadlocked at one apiece after two periods, and in which host RIT was out-shot by a 40-29 margin. The Valiants are undoubtedly already eyeing a December 7th rematch at Manhattanville’s rink.
Just ten points separate four teams, No. 4 Middlebury, No. 5 Wis.-River Falls, No. 6 Wis.-Superior, and No. 7 Plattsburgh.
On the strength of a weekend split with No. 8 St. Thomas, Concordia enters this week’s poll at No. 14. The Cobbers stand at 4-1-0 in the early goings, with a match against No. 10 Wis.-Stevens Point on the docket for Friday.
In other key games between the MIAC and the NCHA, No. 8 St. Thomas faces No. 6 Wis.-Superior on Friday and No. 13 St. John’s makes a trip to Stevens Point to play the No. 10 Pointers on Saturday.
The USCHO.com Poll is compiled by U.S. College Hockey Online, and consists of 15 voters, including coaches and beat writers from across the country.