Hockey East picks – Dec. 27 – 31

In the handful of contests last week, I doubled my lead over Jim.  (Somehow, that sounds a lot more impressive than saying my lead went from one to two games.)

I could complain that I would have widened that lead even more if I’d picked the New Hampshire – Maine split the other way, but I’ll take the extra margin and do my best to shut up.

Dave last week: 4-2-0
Jim last week: 3-3-0
Dave’s record-to-date: 87-40-11
Jim’s record-to-date: 85-42-11

Here are this week’s picks:

Frozen Holiday Classic (Bridgeport, CT)

Saturday/Sunday, Dec. 27/28

Massachusetts-Lowell vs Sacred Heart 
Dave’s pick: Sacred Heart stunned the River Hawks a year ago on banner-raising night, but that ain’t happening again.
UML 5, SH 1
Jim’s pick: I think this game has the chance to be closer, but still think Lowell will come out ahead.
UML 4, SH 2

Union vs Connecticut
Dave’s pick: Union hasn’t been dominating the ECAC, but it’ll be good enough to advance to the finals.
Union 4, UConn 1
Jim’s pick: Again, I think Dave’s margin here is a little off but I can’t disagree with the result.
Union 3, UConn 2

Championship/Third-Place Games
Dave’s pick: I’m taking Lowell over all comers, and UConn over Sacred Heart.
UML 3, Union 2; UML 4, UConn 1; Union 3, SH 1; UConn 2, SH 1
Jim’s pick: If Lowell and Union go head-to-head in the title game, that is the marquis matchup. But the first games back from break are always unpredictable.
UML 4, Union 3; UML 4, UConn 2; Union 4, SH 1; UConn 3, SH 1

Florida College Classic (Estero, FL)

Sunday/Monday, Dec. 28/29

Miami vs Notre Dame
Dave’s pick: I’ve been a little too optimistic about the Irish this year, so this time I’m going with Miami.
Miami 3, UND 2
Jim’s pick: Tough game to pick, but I might as well be a little different than Dave.
UND 4, Miami 3

Championship/Third-Place Game 
Dave’s pick: A match-up with 3-17-0 Lake State will be a cakewalk for Notre Dame, nostalgia notwithstanding; Cornell will be a lot more interesting. It’s a win either way.
UND 5, LSSU 1; UND 3, Cornell 2
Jim’s pick: I agree with Dave on Lake State – no problem for their ex-coach’s squad. But Cornell is another story.
UND 4, LSSU 1; Cornell 4, UND 3

Catamount Cup (Vermont)

Sunday, Dec. 28

Providence vs Massachusetts 
Dave’s pick: These two teams are going in opposite directions. No contest.
PC 4, UMass 1
Jim’s pick: Providence had things rolling into break. Did the days off hurt?
PC 3, UMass 2

Air Force at Vermont
Dave’s pick: This one would be lopsided at any venue. Even more so in the Catamounts’ barn.
UVM 5, AF 1
Jim’s pick: I don’t think Dave gives Air Force enough credit. But I don’t give them enough credit to squeak out a win.
UVM 4, AF 2

Monday, Dec. 29

Air Force vs Massachusetts
Dave’s pick: The second-round matchups are predetermined; I’m going with the Minutemen in a close one.
UMass 3, AF 2
Jim’s pick: I have never liked pre-determined field tournaments, but this one does mean UVM and UMass don’t have to meet again (met twice at end of November). I actually think Air Force can pull out a win in this one.
AF 4, UMass 3

Providence at Vermont
Dave’s pick: I was going to pick the Friars until I saw that the Catamounts are undefeated at home. I’m still mightily tempted, but I think home ice wins out. Barely.
UVM 2, PC 1 (OT)
Jim’s pick: Have to agree here. UVM at the Gut is an impressive team. Though this is an impressive matchup.
UVM 3, PC 2

Tuesday/Wednesday, Dec. 30/31

New Hampshire at Omaha 
Dave’s pick: The Wildcats are struggling and Nebraska-Omaha is 10-4-2. Unfortunately, I don’t think UNH comes out with more than a point.
UNO 4, UNH 3; UNO 3, UNH 2
Jim’s pick: Especially on the road, I have to agree with Dave. I will pick a sweep for the Mavericks, but should UNH come away with three or four points, this could be the turnaround this club needs.
UNO 3, UNH 1; UNO 4, UNH 2


  1. While I hope I am wrong, as a Union Alumnus I don’t see them making it to the NCAA this year unless they win the ECAC and that is not likely. While the team has talent they lack the size and leadership and “acid in the gut” that marks a hockey champ. I am not sure Yale will make it either. RPI and Quinnipiac will well represent the ECAC.


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