Game Picks, D-III East: January 23, 2020

Matthew Cuce leads a potent Elmira offense in search of a win over Wilkes in the tight UCHC (Photo by Elmira Athletics)

Points every weekend is the mantra for many coaches in the midst of key league battles. With just a few weeks remaining in the regular season, it is all about the points as virtually every league is competitive and having a top three within four points of each other. This past weekend I finished with a record of 6-3-0 (.833) just missing out on some tight conference matchups. My record now stands at 53-30-5 (.631). Hard to believe the end of January is right in front of us but that means weeks and games are dwindling in the regular season – time to kick the game into high gear.

Here are this week’s picks that showcase some key conference action:

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Framingham State @ Fitchburg State
The Falcons have got their game back on track but now face a Rams squad that knows a little about winning recently. The memory is short lived as the Falcons take the battle of FSUs – Fitchburg State, 5-2

Friday, January 24, 2020

New England College @ No. 13 Babson
Friday night has been the Brad Arvanitis show in goal for the Beavers and he, like the rest of the team will need to be on against a potent NEC offense led by Nikita Pintusov and his 20 goals. Always low scoring at Babson – Babson, 2-1

Assumption @ Stonehill
Both teams are battling for playoff position in the NE-10 and this one figures to be a very goal-filled contest. The Greyhounds start fast and hold on for the win – Assumption, 5-4

No. 12 Salve Regina @ No. 9 University of New England
This one figures to be a playoff style game and Salve Regina will be looking to make up for last weekend’s loss to Endicott. The Nor’easters will be less than hospitable hosts with Ryan Bloom and company making things difficult for the Seahawks – UNE, 4-3

Fredonia @ No. 11 Stevenson
The Mustangs picked up a big win over Elmira last week that moved them to the top of the UCHC standings. Playing a nonconference opponent won’t see Stevenson change their game as they look to build consistency for coach Dawes – Stevenson, 5-4

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Plattsburgh @ No. 3 Geneseo
The Knights have had some time to stew on their loss to Elmira while the Cardinals are riding a three-game unbeaten streak and maybe their best hockey of the season. Home ice is the difference here, but the Knights must come overcome so game-lag to start the contest – Geneseo, 4-2

No. 6 Hobart @ No. 2 Norwich
The Cadets have surrendered three or more goals in a game only two times all season and Hobart certainly know how good the Cadets can be defensively from a prior 2-1 loss this season. History repeats itself but only because of an OT winner – Norwich, 2-1

Wilkes @ Elmira
The Soaring Eagles have been just that until stumbling a bit against league leader Stevenson on Saturday. Look for a strong first period to set the tempo in an exciting game going to the home team – Elmira, 4-3

Wesleyan @ Connecticut College
The Cardinals are coming off a nice weekend sweep of the teams from Maine. They keep it a bit closer to home in Connecticut this time but need an ENG because it is that close against the Camels – Wesleyan, 4-2

It’s awesome when matchups include teams battling for position and when they are ranked battles, it’s even better – “Drop the Puck!”