Atlantic Hockey Picks, Jan. 9- 13

Last week:

Dan: 3-7-4
Chris: 5-5-4

On the season:

Dan: 69-49-19 (.573)
Chris: 79-39-19 (.646)


This Week’s Picks:

Friday, January 9 and Saturday, January 10
Niagara at Air Force
Dan: Expect a lot of goal scoring. Both teams are working through issues in goal, which normally wins out over the lack of offense they’ve produced over the last month. Add in the desperation for some wins, and you’re looking at an exciting weekend of hockey. Edge to Air Force playing at home. Air Force sweeps.
Chris: Typically, this would be a battle between top four teams. But Air Force is in ninth place and Niagara dead last. They are a combined 0-9-3 in their last 12 games. I’m going with the home team to bounce back. Air Force sweeps.

Holy Cross at Canisius
Dan: 11 AM on a Friday is barely time to have a cup of coffee before stepping on the ice. That said, you could wake up the Holy Cross team at 4 AM on a Wednesday, and they’d either post a shutout or allow one goal. Holy Cross sweeps.
Chris: This series features a bizarre Friday start time of 11:00 am. I like the Holy Cross defense to be the difference here. I’d go with a Crusaders win and a tie, but since we don’t pick ties I’m picking a Holy Cross sweep.

Sacred Heart at Mercyhurst
Dan: Get ready for a lot of offense. Edge to Mercyhurst, who rallied from a 6-3 loss last week to push a tie with Ohio State. Mercyhurst sweeps.
Chris: Both these teams can score goals and that could make for some entertaining hockey. I think Mercyhurst will find a way to pick up four points. Lakers sweep.

American International at Rochester Institute of Technology
Dan: RIT is 24-3-2 all-time against AIC, including a 21-3-2 mark since reclassifying to Division I. They were 15-1-1 all-time at Ritter Arena, and they enter this weekend with a 10-game winning streak against the Yellow Jackets. Across that 10-game streak, the Tigers outscored AIC, 39-12. Since joining D1, RIT is +67 against AIC. Even though AIC could always steal a game from anyone, they’re up against it this weekend. RIT sweeps.
Chris:RIT needs these games against an opponent it has handled pretty well at home. These are must points if the Tigers want to make a run in the second half of the season. That said, AIC has proved it can knock off anyone, anywhere. But I like the Tigers to come out with a sweep.

Bentley at Robert Morris
Dan: This is going to be an exciting weekend with two high-powered offenses taking on better-than-average goalies. We know what Dalton Izyk and Terry Shafer are capable of, but I’m excited to see what happens when Jayson Argue gets his first taste of the defending league champions. In five games, the freshman has a 1.97 GAA and a .934 save percentage. Robert Morris wins on Friday. Bentley wins on Saturday.
Chris:This is the premier series of the weekend, a battle between first and third place. A split wouldn’t surprise me, but I’ve got a gut feeling RMU will prevail. Robert Morris sweeps.

Friday, January 9
Connecticut at Army
Dan: One of the more evenly-played rivalries through the years, UConn holds a 29-28-8 record with West Point dating back to the mid-20th century. The Huskies have struggled in non-conference play, going 2-6-3, and I think Army could steal one here. That said, I’m still thinking the Huskies are a hair ahead of them right now. UConn wins.
Chris: Army is tough at home and UConn is 0-1 against its former league so far (2-0 loss to Sacred Heart). But I think the Huskies even that up with a UConn win.

Tuesday January 13
Canisius at Mercyhurst
Dan: The good news is that the bus scheduled to carry Canisius to Mercyhurst should finally be shoveled out from the snowfall that forced this game’s postponement. I’m calling this one for the Lakers. Mercyhurst wins.
Chris:This is a makeup of a game canceled back in November due to the snowpocalypse that buried Western New York. The teams tied in Buffalo in the first half of what should have been a home and home weekend, but I think the Lakers win on home ice. Mercyhurst wins.