The Frozen Four matchups are set with East meeting West in each of two semifinals on Friday. My quarterfinal picks saw my upset pick miss and the defending champions bounced by a strong Adrian team effort. I finished at 2-2-0 (.500), which brings the season total to 93-45-9 (.663). My Western counterpart, Brian, matched the output with his somewhat different picks, so now we are down to the semifinals and a total prognostication on the championship final assuming one or both of us gets it 100 percent right for Friday.
Here are the picks for the semifinal round to challenge Mr. Lester for pick and regional supremacy.
Friday, March 14
Trinity vs. St. Norbert
The two teams are in many ways mirror images of each other with NCAA experience, deep and talented offensive players, stout defense, and playoff-experienced goaltending. Special teams might slightly favor the Bantams, whose power play has been effective in the playoffs. The Green Knights are always in every battle and willing to go the distance, no matter how long it takes, but this one goes to Trinity in overtime off the stick of a senior who has been there before. Trinity 3-2
Adrian vs. Norwich
The Bulldogs EARNED their way to Utica by knocking off the defending national champions on the road and now face the nation’s number one team in the semifinals. Neither team has faced the other this season, but both bring potent offenses to the ice in a game that will generate a lot of chances to challenge opposing goaltenders. The Cadets haven’t been here in a while, and this senior class has been on a mission all season. They don’t get derailed here, but it is a battle to the final horn. Norwich 4-3