If any CHA teams had a chance of reaching the Frozen Four this year, Harvard put an end to those hopes last weekend, knocking off Niagara, 6-0, and No. 10 Mercyhurst, 5-2, in a trip to Western New York.
Niagara, a Frozen Four participant last year, had no realistic chance heading into the weekend but Mercyhurst, riding an 11-game unbeaten streak, could at least see the possibility, however slim.
Now, the four-team league will play out the skein, heading for the CHA Final Four, March 7-8, at the City Sports Center Arena in Detroit.
The Lakers still look down from atop the league with a 3-0-0 record, tied with the Purple Eagles with six points while holding two games in hand over Niagara’s 3-2-0 CHA mark. Wayne State (1-2-0) and Findlay (1-4-0) are tied for third with two points each.
Although it was nonconference action, Wayne State may have had its biggest weekend in its four-year history as the Warriors swept Northeastern by identical 2-0 scores in Boston. The wins extended the team’s unbeaten streak to five games and established a school record for wins in a season with seven.
Reinke To Replace Page Over Weekend
With Niagara head coach Margot Page traveling to Germany as the head coach of Canada’s U-22 team this week, assistant coach Heather Reinke will take over the reins of the Purple Eagles for their games in Boston this weekend.
Reinke, a 1997 New Hampshire graduate, is in her third season at Niagara. She replaced Page behind the bench earlier this year as the Purple Eagles defeated Northeastern — their opponent this Saturday — 3-2 at Dwyer Arena, Nov. 15.
Findlay, which entered the holiday break at 7-8-1, is just 2-6-0 in 2003 … The Oilers are on their second three-game losing streak of the season … They have not lost more than three games in a row this season … Mercyhurst’s 5-2 loss to Harvard was the team’s first since a 2-1 overtime loss to Princeton, Nov. 23 … The Lakers are 11-2-0 on the road this season … They are 1-6-1 versus ranked opponents in 2002-03 … Niagara, with its loss to Harvard, is 1-5-2 against ranked opponents.
Offensive Player of the Week–Katie Jones, Jr., F, Wayne State
Defensive Player of the Week–Anna VanderMarliere, Sr., G, Wayne State
Rookie of the Week–Emily McGrath-Agg, Fr., F, Wayne State
Findlay at Minnesota State (Friday-Saturday)
Findlay is 4-2-1 in seven meetings with Minnesota State … The series is tied at 1-1-1 in Mankato … The teams are meeting for the first time at All Seasons Arena … After going unbeaten in four consecutive road games, the Mavericks have lost four straight home games … MSU is playing its first home games against a CHA opponent … The Mavericks, 2-2-0 against CHA teams, were swept at Mercyhurst and won two games at Wayne State … Findlay enters the weekend on a three-game losing streak … The Oilers play their next four games on the road against WCHA opponents, with Bemidji State up next on their schedule … Findlay is 0-3-0 against WCHA teams, with all three losses, two to Minnesota and one to Ohio State, coming at home.
Wayne State at No. 10 Mercyhurst (Friday)
No. 10 Mercyhurst at Wayne State (Sunday)
Mercyhurst has won all 12 previous meetings between the two teams. The Lakers have outscored the Warriors by a total of 63-7 … Mercyhurst has shut out WSU in their last three meetings and has a current shutout streak 202:16 … Both head coaches, Mercyhurst’s Michael Sisti and Wayne State’s Tom O’Malley, enter this weekend with 81 career victories … Sisti is in his fourth season as a head coach, all with the Lakers, while O’Malley, in his fourth season with the Warriors, has nine seasons under his belt, the first five at Boston College.
Niagara at Northeastern (Saturday)
Niagara at Boston College (Sunday)
Niagara is 4-6-1 versus Northeastern and has not lost in 10 meetings with Boston College … Niagara’s three overtime games, all of which have come in 2003, have resulted in ties … Friday’s loss to Harvard was the Purple Eagles’ first shutout loss since a 2-0 loss at Northeastern, Nov. 24, 2001 … The Huskies have lost five straight games, three by shutout … Six of Northeastern’s last nine losses have been by shutout … NU goalie Chanda Gunn was named one of 10 finalists for the Patty Kazmaier Award this week … BC’s 3-2 win Tuesday over Northeastern in the Beanpot semifinals was its first over the Huskies in 25 tries, after going 0-22-2 … The win advances the Eagles to the Beanpot championship game, Feb. 11, at No. 1 Harvard … BC’s 10 wins this year are the most it has collected since the 1997-98 season.