Hockey East picks – Feb. 27-28

I’d have bet the ranch that I was picking up a game on Jim when he took Massachusetts over Providence.

And I’d have lost the ranch.

But I got that one back with Boston University’s overtime win in the Beanpot, so I remain six games up.

Dave last week: 7-3-3
Jim last week: 7-3-3
Dave’s record-to-date: 149-73-24
Jim’s record-to-date: 143-79-24

Here are this week’s picks:

Friday, Feb. 27

Maine at Providence
Dave’s pick:  The Friars should sweep with this series being entirely in their own barn, but their inability to take four points in hardly any weekend does concern me.
PC 4, Maine 3
Jim’s pick: I have concerns too, but I’m not betting against Providence at this point.
PC 4, Maine 2

Massachusetts at Connecticut
Dave’s pick: You’d think that home ice would dictate a UConn win, but the Huskies have struggled mightily the last few weeks while UMass has played well.
UMass 2, UConn 1
Jim’s pick: I fell like UConn has to right the ship at some point and the last home game of the season – a place that has been kind – is the only place to start.
UConn 2, UMass 1

Vermont at Massachusetts-Lowell
Dave’s pick: I’m feeling better about Lowell’s chances after the big win over UMass and, even more significantly, the tie at BC.
UML 3, UVM 2 (OT)
Jim’s pick: This will be one of the ultimate grinder series with both teams fighting to earn a bye and home ice in the quarterfinals.
UML 3, UVM 2.

Northeastern at Boston University
Dave’s pick: I can’t believe that the Terriers will fritter away another opportunity to clinch sole ownership of the regular season title.
BU 4, NU 3
Jim’s pick: These teams played an emotion-filled game on Monday. But part of me believes that loss might start a tailspin for these Huskies.
BU 4, NU 2

Merrimack at New Hampshire 
Dave’s pick: As noted in this week’s column, I see UNH sweeping this weekend to gain the last home ice berth.
UNH 4, MC 2
Jim’s pick: I like UNH at home. But as you will see later, no sweep pick for me.
UNH 2, MC 1

Boston College at Notre Dame
Dave’s pick: Notre Dame’s impressive performance last weekend at BU has me concerned, but I’m going with the Eagles.
BC 3, UND 2 (OT)
Jim’s pick: At least on night one, I think the Eagles will prevail.
BC 3, UND 1

Saturday, Feb. 28

Merrimack at New Hampshire 
Dave’s pick: The Warriors, whose overall record got them nationally ranked, slide into the cellar.
UNH 3, MC 1
Jim’s pick: I feel like senior night will provide the spark to get this team going.
MC 2, UNH 1 

Boston University at Northeastern
Dave’s pick: The Huskies salvage a split in the series, though after their loss on Monday in overtime it’ll hardly feel that way. It could even be a blowout, if BU ignores the Pairwise implications and just sits on their first-place laurels.
NU 4, BU 1
Jim’s pick: I think that BU takes this sweep and glides into the playoffs red hot.
BU 3, NU 2

Maine at Providence
Dave’s pick: Although I suspect one of the two games in this series ends in a tie, I’m certainly not going to start picking ties now.
PC 3, Maine 2
Jim’s pick: As much as I want to agree with Dave that this series will probably yield points to Maine, I think I am compelled to pick Providence at home.
PC 3, Maine 2

Vermont at Massachusetts-Lowell
Dave’s pick: A split in this series feels like by far the most logical outcome, but I’m not going to open myself up to Jim gaining two games on me if I pick the split the wrong way. Besides, I think the River Hawks’ shaky confidence got a huge boost in the last two games.
UML 2, UVM 1
Jim’s pick: As much as Dave talks about confidence, I think more about Lowell being a team that is generally built for the postseason and that postseason begins this weekend locking up a bye.
UML 4, UVM 2

Boston College at Notre Dame 
Dave’s pick: Here’s another probable split in which I’m going to use Tigran Petrosian chess tactics to stymie Jim. I also think the Eagles are the better team even if they’ve had a tough time with Notre Dame and it’s in South Bend.
BC 4, UND 3 (OT)
Jim’s pick: I will go against Dave here. Notre Dame is playing too well to tank the final weekend, even to BC. They salvage the split.
UND 3, BC 2