A hard-fought three-point weekend was more than enough to keep Minnesota at No. 1 in this week’s USCHO.com/CSTV Division I men’s poll, released Monday.
The decision wasn’t unanimous this time, but the Golden Gophers, who tied and beat Minnesota State in a home-and-home series Friday and Saturday, retained plenty of support in finishing atop the rankings for the third consecutive week, getting 36 of 40 first-place votes.
No. 2 again was New Hampshire, which picked up the remaining four first-place votes this time around. The Wildcats beat Merrimack Tuesday and Vermont Sunday to extend their unbeaten streak to 10 games, second nationally only to the Gophers’ run of 16 games.
In fact, the top five from last Monday’s poll were unchanged. Maine was third once more after shutting out Providence Friday, while No. 4 Miami held its ground with a sweep of Ferris State and fifth-ranked Notre Dame kept pace by sweeping Alaska.
Boston College crept up to No. 6 with a Saturday win over archrival Boston University; the teams’ scheduled Friday game was postponed due to unplayable conditions on the Kelley Rink ice. The Eagles traded places with new No. 7 Michigan, which split with Western Michigan home-and-home.
St. Cloud State moved up to eighth this week with a sweep of Michigan Tech that extended SCSU’s unbeaten streak to nine games. The Huskies were followed by Colorado College, which swept archrival Denver and was rewarded with a six-place leap from the previous poll. No. 10 North Dakota completed the first half of the poll; the Fighting Sioux played only an exhibition against the U.S. Under-18 team but inched back into the top 10.
No. 11 Boston University kicked off the next 10 teams, tying Massachusetts Tuesday before its loss to BC. Cornell was next, with Denver at No. 13.
Vermont, which beat Harvard and Massachusetts-Lowell before falling to UNH, rose four places to No. 14, while Michigan State continued to slide, this week to 15th.
UMass, returning Clarkson, Dartmouth, Alaska and poll newcomer Lake Superior State rounded out the top 20 this week. Dropping out since the last poll were Yale and Northern Michigan.