SUNYAC picks: Dec. 30

Two teams hosting tournaments
Only three SUNYAC teams are in action New Year’s weekend, and two of them are hosting tournaments.
Plattsburgh holds its longstanding Cardinal Classic, which this year consists of Castleton, Babson, and Utica.
“Our goal is twofold,” Plattsburgh coach Bob Emery said. “We try to get different teams and quality teams. Since we’re one of the few schools that have a tournament, people always contact me to get into the tournament. Our goal every year is to try to get one ECAC West team, one ECAC East team, and one NESCAC team.”
They weren’t able to get a NESCAC team this year, so they got two ECAC East teams. Castleton sits in first place while Babson is tied for fourth. Over in the ECAC West, Utica is struggling in its league, but is 8-3 overall.
“This year, I think we got a great field, and it’s anyone’s tournament to win,” Emery said.
Plattsburgh faces Babson in the first round, and I’ll take the Cardinals to win this game.
“We don’t have a lot of superstars,” Emery said. “We got good balance and good depth.”
Oswego is hosting its newer Pathfinder Bank Oswego Hockey Classic. It, too, tries to get teams from different areas of the country, including the west. This year, it got Connecticut College (NESCAC), Neumann (ECAC West), and Hamline (MIAC).
“It’s a good field; Neumann and Hamline are two teams that both were in the NCAA tournament,” Oswego coach Ed Gosek said. “It says a lot for the tournament that three of the four teams were in the NCAA tournament last year.”
Oswego faces Connecticut College in the first game. The Camels are struggling this year, winning only twice in eight games.
“You never know.” Gosek said. “You have to be prepared for the first game.”
I think Oswego will be plenty prepared, and will advance to the championship game.
And one team traveling to one
The only other team in action is Potsdam, as it travels to Middlebury for the Holiday Classic. This tournament has a preset schedule, so Potsdam will be playing Southern Maine and Skidmore.
Expect Potsdam to beat Southern Maine, but lose to Skidmore.
In the last week of action before the break, I went 8-3-1 for a total of 42-14-7 (.722).



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