Middlebury, St. Mary’s, Gustavus Adolphus and Williams have been selected by USA Hockey to participate in the American Women’s College Hockey Alliance Division III National Championship, to be held March 9-10 in Rochester, N.Y.
This tournament marks the fourth year of the AWCHA National Championship, and the second-ever for Division III. This year, the NCAA will host its first official Women’s Ice Hockey Division I National Championship, with plans to add the Division III National Championship to its docket in 2002.
Middlebury earned the first seed in the championship as the ECAC-III regular-season and playoff champion, finishing with an overall record of 21-1-1. The No. 1-ranked Panthers claimed the first-ever AWCHA Division III title last year in Boston by sweeping Augsburg, 5-1 and 8-1.
Gustavus Adolphus will enter the tournament as the second seed after claiming both the regular-season and playoff crowns in the MIAC, and posting an overall record of 22-5-1.
Williams, which defeated Manhattanville, 3-2, in overtime before dropping a 3-0 decision to Middlebury in the ECAC-III playoffs, was selected as the No. 3 seed. The Williams Ephs enter the championship holding a 20-4-1 overall record.
St. Mary’s University rounds out the competition, coming into the postseason 21-6-1 after losing, 4-2, and tying, 1-1, against Gustavus in the MIAC playoffs.
The championship will take place at the ESL Sports Centre in Rochester, N.Y. Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for students for a single-day pass, $12/$8 for an all-events pass. Children five and under are admitted free. For ticket information, please contact the ESL Sports Centre at (716) 424-4625.
The New York State Amateur Hockey Association and the Rochester Girls’ Hockey Association will provide event support and volunteers to staff the championship.
The AWCHA is a program of USA Hockey funded through the United States Olympic Committee/NCAA Grant Program. The purpose of the AWCHA is to organize and develop activities with women’s intercollegiate varsity ice hockey teams to nationally promote the development and sponsorship of women’s ice hockey at all NCAA levels throughout the United States.