Picks, Jan. 8-10

Shane here … Seems like we’re just about back to normal in terms of the college hockey schedule. Sure, Michigan Tech is in sunny Arizona for Arizona State’s tournament, but eight other WCHA teams are in action against each other, including two teams which have been off for the last three weekends. Yes, all you folks in Mankato and Anchorage. Time to stop binge watching “Making of a Murderer.” College hockey is back. Let’s get to the picks!

Bowling Green at Lake Superior State

Shane: These two teams played to a pair of ties earlier this season in Bowling Green, and, with the way things went throughout the league over the first half of the season, I wouldn’t be shocked to see another stalemate or two. Both of these teams closed out the first half playing solid hockey, so I’m going with a split. Falcons 4-1, Lakers 2-1

Jack: I’d forgotten completely about BG and Lake State’s pair of ties. Maybe that’s just how ubiquitous they (ties) have become in this league. The Lakers are 5-3-2 in their last three games, so don’t expect a pushover here. I think a split is also likely. Lakers 3-2, Falcons 4-2

Northern Michigan at Minnesota State

Shane: Here are two more teams that tied twice in their first go-round. The Wildcats have kept things close with everyone, scoring 47 goals and giving up 47. NMU appeared to play well at the GLI, and the Mavericks might be a little rusty after the long layoff. But MSU is also healthy finally, and I think their depth will come through in a pair of close games. Mavericks 3-2, 2-1

Jack: The Wildcats are the overtime kings of college hockey. They lead the NCAA in the stats, and they tied the Mavs earlier this year. It seems like they’ve turned a corner, so I’ll call a split here. Wildcats 2-1, Mavericks 3-2

Alaska at Alabama Huntsville

Shane: After seeing them play a few weeks ago and seeing their results after that, especially against No. 1 North Dakota, I think the Chargers are better than their record indicates. At the same time, I think the Nanooks should be better than their record. But they’ve been reeling with one win in their last 11 games. Here’s something I haven’t done very often: I’m calling a Huntsville sweep. Chargers 3-2, 3-1

Jack: Be careful, Shane: The last time I called a Huntsville split it went didn’t happen (and I also got scolded on Twitter for jinxing them). I think they’ll get at least three points here, because the Nanooks just aren’t the team they were last season, but Alaska has enough firepower, I think, to earn the split. Chargers 3-2, Nanooks 4-1

Bemidji State at Alaska Anchorage

Shane: The Beavers started the second half on a good note securing three points in Fairbanks. They’re staying in Alaska where life on the road can be tough. If they get two more points, that would be a highly successful road trip. The Seawolves might be rusty, too, after the long break. Beavers 4-1, Seawolves 3-2

Jack: This is the first time the Beavers have done the two-week Alaska trip, and so far it doesn’t look like the jetlag or any other assorted travel woes have hit them. Of course, nobody knows what they’ll be like this weekend after their eighth straight day in the Last Frontier. I think they have it in them for at least two more points. Beavers 3-1, Seawolves 4-3

Michigan Tech in Desert Hockey Classic

Shane: Division I college hockey is back in Arizona (I haven’t forgotten you, Northern Arizona), and the Huskies get to be part of its return, playing in Arizona State’s tournament. They will play Connecticut and either Yale or the host team (I’m guessing it will be the former) and have a really good chance of coming out of there with a trophy. Tech 5, UConn 2; Tech 3, Yale 1

Jack: How many Tech fans immediately bought tickets when they found out about this tournament? I’m curious to see what’s the turnout is like… guessing it becomes a “destination” trip in no time. As for the hockey: The Huskies have to be the favorite here, right? I think they win too. It would be fun to see them play the Sun Devils in the finals, however Tech 6, UConn 3; Tech 4, Arizona State 1

Last week: Shane 11-3-1, Jack 8-6-1. Overall: Shane 66-40-23, Jack 59-47-23