ECAC Hockey Picks: Jan 5-9

Here’s a look at the upcoming weekend in ECAC Hockey. All games start at 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted.

Last time: 6-5-1

Overall: 35-21-4


Friday, Jan. 5

Quinnipiac at Colgate

The Raiders will be without starting goalie Colton Point, who is on Team Canada’s roster for the World Junior Championship. While the sophomore played well when these teams met in November, Colgate was able to take advantage of several Quinnipiac miscues in a 4-1 win.  The Bobcats had a rough end to the first half, but beat Connecticut 3-0 Tuesday. Still, one game isn’t a large enough sample size to see if QU was able to put its first-half problems behind it. Colgate wins

Princeton at Cornell      

Princeton had a strong showing last time out, playing No.1 St. Cloud State to a pair of ties at Hobey Baker Rink last weekend. But the Big Red have shown little sign of slowing down and I have a hard time picking against them at home. Cornell wins

Union at Dartmouth

The Dutchmen’s success in league play hasn’t carried to non-conference games, as Union is 4-8-1 outside of ECAC Hockey. Dartmouth has shown some improvement lately, but I like Union’s overall body of work better season. Union wins

Rensselaer at Harvard

Harvard is finally home after a program record nine-game road trip. The Crimson were 3-5-1 during that stretch, but went 3-1 to conclude its time away from home. It’s been a rough season for RPI, as the Engineers are 1-9 in their last ten games.  Some of those have been close losses, but even so, I don’t see Rensselaer able to match the Crimson offensively. Harvard wins

Canisius at St. Lawrence              

The Saints showed some signs of life last weekend, doubling their season win total on the way to a Catamount Cup win. St. Lawrence finally appears to finally be healthy after a rash of injuries earlier in the season. That improved health, along with confidence from last weekend, should help the Saints get their first home win of the season. St. Lawrence wins              

Massachusetts at Yale                  

Former St. Lawrence coach Greg Carvel is in the midst of his second season as head coach at UMass, but has already helped make the Minutemen competitive. Massachusetts is 9-7, but hasn’t played since Dec. 10, while Yale played two games at the Ledyard Bank Classic last weekend. The Minutemen will be without freshman defenseman Cole Makar, the fourth pick in the NHL draft in June, who is playing with Team Canada at the World Junior Championship.  It might take the Minutemen a while to shake off the rust and that should given an advantage to the Bulldogs. Yale wins

Saturday, Jan.6

Union at Harvard, 3:30 p.m.

If Harvard wants to move into the top of the league, it’s going to have to start beating teams above it. Union is one of those teams, and I think the Crimson take advantage of their first home game since November to start a second-half resurgence. Harvard wins

Princeton at Colgate

Even without Point, the Raiders have plenty of defensive talent and some up-and-coming forwards. I’d feel pretty confidence picking Colgate if Point is back in net, but even so, I think this should be a tight matchup between two good skating teams. But I don’t see another scoreless tie, which was the case when these teams met in November.  I think the Tigers have a slight edge offensively, which might grow wider if Point is not in goal. Princeton wins

Quinnipiac at Cornell

Cornell and Quinnipiac have developed a bit of a rivalry over the last several years, with the Big Red’s   Trevor Yates saying “we don’t like them very much,” prior to the first game of the season between these teams in November. Rivalries aside, the Big Red have been the better team throughout the year and that shouldn’t change, especially at Lynah Rink. Cornell wins

Rensselaer at Dartmouth

Like I mentioned above, the Big Green have been playing better lately. RPI is due to break through with a win at some point, but I’m not sure if it will come against Dartmouth, who have played well at home. Dartmouth wins

Canisius at St. Lawrence

Assuming Canisuis loses Friday, it will enter Saturday on a three-game winless streak. I think the Golden Griffins are too talented of a team to let that streak reach four games.  Canisius wins

Brown at New Hampshire

The Bears showed some signs of improvement before the break, but started the second half with a sluggish 5-0 loss to a good Providence team on Wednesday. New Hampshire started the year strong, but has been in a tailspin since mid-November. The Wildcats have given up a lot of goals lately, and Brown has some talented offensive players, even if that hasn’t shown on the score sheet so far. Brown wins

 Monday, Jan. 8

Maine at Brown                              

Brown ends a stretch of four consecutive games against Hockey East teams with a home game against the Black Bears. Unlike New Hampshire, Maine has been playing well lately, as the Black Bears enter the weekend on a seven-game unbeaten streak. Even though Brown is at home, I’m taking the hot hand in this matchup. Brown wins

Tuesday, Jan. 9

Harvard at Rensselaer  

The Crimson only have one game the weekend before the Beanpot, which means that these teams will play a rare mid-week conference game. With that being said, I don’t see the outcome being any different from Friday.  Harvard wins