ECAC East/NESCAC picks: Jan. 20

Last week, I finished a very solid week of picks with a 5-1-1 record. It was a dominant weekend for the road teams. For the season, my overall record now sits at 33-13-6 (.692) — creeping up toward the 70 percent success number, but not quite there yet.
Points are coming at a premium now with the number of weeks left in the regular season winding down towards February. It’s now the second time around between teams, so there is more at stake for teams that lost the opening round. Here is how I see some of the matchups.
Friday, January 20, 2012
Williams vs. Bowdoin
The first game was a wild finish, as Bowdoin stole a point on the road with two goals late in the third period for a 3-3 tie. Right now, the Polar Bears are scoring lots of goals, and Ryan Purdy and Williams don’t give up a lot of goals. There will be goals for sure, but Williams can score too — just not enough at “The Sid.” Bowdoin 4-3
Castleton vs. Southern Maine
The Spartans had last weekend off and may still be smarting from back-to-back losses against Plattsburgh. Southern Maine would like to see a positive outcome other than a tie, but will find a tough challenge against a Castleton team that scores late to grab two points. Castleton 5-3
Massachusetts-Boston vs. New England College
The Beacons are coming off an emotional high, having knocked off the previously unbeaten and No. 1 Norwich Cadets last Saturday.  They have a long look up the standings at their opponent this week, so a win in the head-to-head match-up is a must. Massachusetts-Boston 3-2
Saturday, January 21, 2012
Oswego vs. Hamilton
There just might be a revenge motivation here for the Lakers, who lost in the opener of their New Year’s tournament last season to the Continentals. Hamilton can skate with the best of them, and this match-up is a close one — closer than some might expect. Oswego 4-3
Trinity vs. Tufts
The Jumbos would like to create some space between themselves the other teams below fighting for the final playoff positions in the NESCAC conference. This weekend’s match-up with Trinity is one of those games they need to win to create some breathing room. It’s close enough for some shortness of breath, but the Jumbos get it done. Tufts 2-1
St. Michael’s vs. Norwich
St. Michael’s junior goaltender Mike Dizgun has been a bright spot this season for the Purple Knights. He is averaging over 32 saves per game, and has kept his team in a lot of games so far this season. The matchup with travel partner Norwich guarantees his shot average goes up, and he will have to keep his team in it from the first drop of the puck. Norwich 6-1
Sunday, January 22, 2012
Wesleyan vs. Tufts
Points on the road are what coach Chris Potter set out for his team to find this season. Nothing is easy on the road, but the Cardinals have been consistent in garnering those all important points so far. Don’t need to wait for the home sweep and four points — take them this weekend. Wesleyan 4-2
Hard to believe there are just five weeks remaining in regular season. The games and points are winding down, and so too are the opportunities to move up in the standings.
Can you say sense of urgency? Drop the puck!


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