Weekend picks: Feb. 3

Friday, Feb. 3

No. 7 Oswego at No. 5 Elmira
Elmira has the edge in the polls and ECAC West standings, but Oswego is the one team that’s upset Plattsburgh this season, so we know they can handle themselves in a high-pressure situation. This is a two-game series and I think we’ll see a split with Elmira winning game one and Oswego taking game two. Elmira 3-1, Oswego 3-2

Friday-Saturday, Feb. 3-4

Augsburg vs. Hamline (home-and-home)
These two are tied atop the MIAC and play a home-and-home series. With just six games to go in the regular season, these two games are pretty crucial in crowning a top dog. I’m giving the advantage to Augsburg and their defense and I’ll pick them to sweep. Augsburg 3-1, 2-0

Endicott at Morrisville
Endicott has a four-point lead atop the CHC, though Morrisville has an extra game to play before the end of the season. Morrisville has a potent offense, scoring  nearly 4.5 goals per game and goalie Renee Schmaltz is the sixth-best goalie in the country. Endicott goalie Vendela Jonsson actually has a better save percentage, though her goals-against average is slightly higher. Both teams have a stingy defense, so it’ll be interesting to see which is the one that gives. I’m going to call for Morrisville to sweep, using their high-scoring offense to take the series. Morrisville 4-1, 5-3

St. Thomas at Concordia (Minn.)
Three points separate the top five teams in the MIAC and St. Thomas is alone at the bottom with 15 points. Special teams could be big in this series — Concordia converts at a 25 percent and St. Thomas’ penalty kill is just 73 percent. The two teams are fairly evenly matched in terms of goals scored and against and this should be a close series. I’ll call a split with Concordia winning game one  and St. Thomas edging out game two. Concordia (Minn.) 3-1, St. Thomas 2-1

Tuesday, Feb. 7

No. 9 Middlebury at No. 1 Plattsburgh
These two met earlier in the season in the Panther/Cardinal tournament with Plattsburgh edging Middlebury 2-1. I don’t think you can pick against Plattsburgh, so I have to give them the edge, but I expect Middlebury to push them. Plattsburgh 3-2

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