NCHC picks: Nov. 29

Thanks to Minnesota-Duluth’s win on Sunday over Minnesota, I stayed a game ahead of Matthew in our picks race, as we both went 5-2-3 (.650) last week. Overall on the year, I am 39-27-9 (.580) while Matthew is 38-28-9 (.566).

Here we go with this week’s games.

Friday-Saturday, Nov. 29-30

No. 13 Miami at Bemidji State
Candace: Miami needs a weekend sweep badly after getting swept by Nebraska-Omaha. Even if the RedHawks aren’t as good on the road, they should deliver. Miami 2-1, 3-1
Matthew: The RedHawks have lost each of their last three games and ran into a hot goalie last weekend at Nebraska-Omaha, but this trip up to Bemidji, Minn., might be what Miami needs right now. BSU is in second place in the WCHA behind only a Ferris State team that has had a wonderful start to its season, but the only team the Beavers have swept so far is 0-12-0 Alabama-Huntsville, and Miami is the best team BSU will have played since opening the season with St. Cloud State and Minnesota. It won’t be easy, but I’ll take Miami to get back on track and sweep this series. Miami 4-3, 2-0

No. 20 New Hampshire at Colorado College
Candace: CC has one of the most dismal offenses in the country, with no player with more than four points a game and a team offense ranked 58 of 59 teams. It will wake up at some point, but I’m not sure this is the weekend. New Hampshire 3-1, 3-2
Matthew: UNH has been very streaky so far, going winless in six between Oct. 12 and Nov. 2, winning six straight after that, and then losing last week to both Harvard and Providence. What makes this one tricky is that, while the Wildcats fell back onto the losing track last week, CC picked up a surprise split in its series last weekend at St. Cloud State. UNH is still scoring an average of nearly two more goals per game than the Tigers are though, so I’ll take the Wildcats to come out west and pick up a couple of wins. New Hampshire 4-2, 3-1

St. Lawrence at North Dakota
Candace: North Dakota has been a frustrating team to pick so far this season, and I don’t really have a handle on St. Lawrence either. North Dakota has to start its usual surge at some point, so why not this weekend? North Dakota 2-1, 3-1
Matthew: North Dakota finally fell out of the top 20 of USCHO’s Men’s Division I Poll this week, but a couple of good performances this weekend at home to St. Lawrence might help UND get back into the pollsters’ better graces. Now seems to be a good time to play the Saints, too, as they’ve lost three of their last four games. That’s not to say UND’s in infinitely better shape — UND is 0-2-1 in its last three — but it’s still a better team than SLU. The challenge will be proving it. UND 3-2, 3-1

Western Michigan vs. Northeastern (at Notre Dame’s Shillelagh Tournament)
Candace: I’m not sure I’ve picked a Western Michigan game correctly this season. I guess there’s no real reason to expect I will this week either. Western Michigan 2-1
Matthew: Like most first-round tournament games where both teams are playing at a neutral site, this one seems like a toss-up. Northeastern’s offense has been a little better than Western Michigan’s so far, but the Broncos’ defense has bested the Huskies’. I’m going to make the homer pick here and go with Western, which it’d no doubt be fine with as it would most likely mean a rematch with a Notre Dame team that swept the Broncos on the opening weekend of the season. Western Michigan 3-1