It’s the home stretch of 2012 for many ECAC teams, as exams and the holidays break are quickly approaching. Here’s a look at this weekend, which features all non-conference matchups. All games are 7 p.m. unless noted. Harvard and RPI both have the weekend off.
Last week: 3-6-2
Friday, Nov. 23
Colgate at Merrimack, 4 p.m.
The Raiders enter the weekend after sweeping Dartmouth and Harvard, as well as the league’s weekly awards. The Warriors have lost three in a row, but two of those have been to Boston College and Boston University. Colgate 4-2
Princeton at Sacred Heart, 4 p.m.
Princeton is in the midst of seven-game road trip, heading north to face their first non-conference opponent in the Pioneers. Sacred Heart is dead-last nationally in team defense by almost half a goal (4.73) and has yet to win a game this season. Still, the then-winless Pioneers knocked off Yale just over a year ago, sending the Bulldogs into a second-half spiral. I think the Tigers’ top lines and power play should be enough to carry them though. Princeton 6-2
St. Lawrence at Northeastern
These teams haven’t met in ten years, but both the Huskies and the Saints were charter members of the ECAC when the league formed in 1961. St. Lawrence has a seven-game unbeaten streak against Hockey East opponents, although they are winless in conference play this season. NU has plenty of talented forwards who have underachieved thus far; the same can’t be said for the Saints’ Kyle Flanagan and Greg Carey. A free HD stream of the game is available here. St. Lawrence 4-2
Clarkson at RIT, 7:05
Clarkson has won seven straight over RIT, and lead the all-time series 10-2-1 The Knights broke out with seven goals against Princeton last Saturday, which should bode well against a Tigers team that is second-t0-last nationally in team defense. Clarkson 5-3
Yale at Denver, 7:37 MT
The Bulldogs head to Denver looking for their first win against the Pioneers in six tries. These teams haven’t met since 1996, a 3-2 overtime win for Denver. Yale has shown flashes this year, but I think the No. 2 Pioneers will be to much, especially at home. Denver 5-2
Dartmouth at Boston College, 4 p.m.
Dartmouth faces it’s biggest test in No.1 Boston College. The Big Green have shown a lot so far, but I just can’t pick against the Eagles at this point. Boston College 4-1
Princeton at Massachusetts-Lowell, 4 p.m
Princeton has won the last three meetings in the series, but I’ll take the suddenly hot-scoring River Hawks at home. UML 5-2
Providence at Brown, 4 p.m.
This is the 27th annual Mayor’s Cup between the cross-town rival Friars and Bears. Brown took the title last season, but I think Providence will get the win here. Providence 4-2
Penn State at Union
Goalie Troy Grosenick practiced this week after hurting his leg two weeks ago against Harvard, according to Ken Schott of the Schenectady Daily Gazette, and could play in one of this weekend’s game. Backup Colin Stevens has actually posted better numbers than Grosenick this season, so the Dutchmen should be fine either way. Union 5-1
Quinnipiac at Massachusetts
Bobcats’ head coach Rand Pecknold almost left QU for the Minuteman last season, but he stayed put and is overseeing a Quinnipiac team that has outscored its opponents 17-5 the last four games. Quinnipiac 3-1
St. Lawrence at Boston University
Call it a homecoming matchup on the road, as Boston University captain Wade Megan and St. Lawrence captain Kyle Flanagan are both Canton natives. I think Megan and the Terriers get the win here. Boston University 5-2
Michigan vs. Cornell, 8 p.m.
The Big Red return to Madison Square Garden for the annual Frozen Apple game. Neither of these teams have done anything inspiring the last few weekends, but I’ll take a flyer on Cornell. Cornell 3-1
Yale at Colorado College, 7:07 p.m. MT
The Tigers have recovered nicely after getting swept by Cornell in Ithaca last month, going 4-2 in that stretch, with their only losses coming to No. 2 Denver. I think they’ll narrowly get past the Bulldogs. Colorado College 4-3
Sunday, Nov. 25
Holy Cross at Brown, 4 p.m.
The Crusaders have lost one game in November, while injury-ravaged Brown has been up-and-down over their first month of play. The Bears should put up some goals, but the real question is whether their defense can hold off a Holy Cross team that’s averaged five goals the last two weekends. Holy Cross 5-4
Penn State at Union. 4 p.m.
I think the Duttchmen complete the sweep, giving them five wins over their last six games. Union 4-0