Atlantic Hockey Picks January 24-26

Last Week:

Dan: 7-3-1
Chris: 7-3-1

On The Season:
Dan: 99-37-18 (.701)
Chris: 90-46-18 (.642)

This Week’s Picks:

Friday, January 24 and Saturday, January 25
Air Force at Holy Cross
Chris: Air Force took five of six points from Holy Cross earlier this season. This time, I think the Crusaders win at least once on home ice. Split.
Dan: Remember when I said Holy Cross was poised for a breakout? With the exception of last week’s loss to Quinnipiac, the Crusaders have a four game unbeaten streak in conference play. I like them to take a game from Air Force, which rebounded last time out with a sweep over Niagara. Split.

Bentley at Mercyhurst
Chris: The Lakers got back into the win column last Friday, and I think they’ll do it again this weekend, albeit only once. Split.
Dan: This is a really good time for a road trip for Bentley. The Falcons finally discovered their mojo in last week’s Saturday game against AIC, which ranked as the best game I saw this year. If they can stay out of the box, which was a problem at the end of periods against Canisius and reared its head a bit against AIC, the main question becomes if they can get over the scoring hump. I think they do. Bentley sweeps.

Army West Point at Niagara
Chris: Niagara has been struggling, and, aside from a loss to their Canadian rivals, Army West Point has been cruising.I’m picking a sweep by the Black Knights.
Dan: Niagara hasn’t won a game since Thanksgiving, which means this is a bad time for them to host a motivated and fresh Army team coming off an “exhibition” loss to RMC, its first loss to the Canadian academy in years. I don’t like this matchup for the Purps, so pick the Black Knights to sweep.

American International at Robert Morris
Chris: This should be a fun series, a rematch of last season’s semifinal, won by AIC in overtime. I think these games will be close again, with each team getting a win. Split.
Dan: Hook this series directly into the accelerator pedal. Two teams that play complete hockey go head-to-head in a series with huge points on the line. This is going to be a great weekend of strong, defensive-minded hockey. If it were in Springfield, I’d probably pick AIC to sweep, but I’m going with my gut that RMU won’t lose six points at home. Split them.

Rochester Institute of Technology vs. Canisius
Chris: The Golden Griffins host on Friday with the Tigers returning the favor on Saturday, when RIT will honor the 10th anniversary of its trip to the Frozen Four. Those ten years sure when by fast. Split.
Dan: Doesn’t it feel like we’re not talking nearly enough about RIT? The Tigers are sailing under the radar in sixth place and take on Canisius this weekend in a big time weekend for the streaky hot Golden Griffins. I worry that because we’re not talking about the Tiger,s they’re going to end the streak or show me why we’re not talking about them. Split.

Saturday, January 25
Yale vs. Sacred Heart
Chris: The teams meeting in the semifinals of the inaugural Connecticut Ice tournament, and hopes are that this will be a yearly Beanpot style affair featuring Yale, SHU, Quinnipiac and UConn. I’m going with Sacred Heart to win.
Dan: Yale is officially rebounded from its abysmal, 2-7 start to the season and is now one of the hotter teams in ECAC. That said, goaltending numbers are still overall down in terms of save percentage, and the Bulldogs, who I remember as a high-flying team from last decade’s run to a Frozen Four, just don’t have the top-flight scoring as years past. I like the Pioneers here. Sacred Heart wins.

Sunday, January 26
Quinnipiac/Connecticut vs. Sacred Heart
Chris: Sacred Heart has absolutely owned UConn in recent years, and I look for that to continue. Against Quinnipiac, probably not. I’ll go with SHU over UConn or Quinnipiac over SHU.
Dan: It’s only fitting that the Connecticut Ice tournament’s inaugural championship would go to CJ Marottolo since his family meant so much to the state’s youth hockey infrastructure. But after CJ’s troops vanquish Yale, I’m picking them to lose…if it’s Quinnipiac. If it’s Connecticut in this game, they’re going to win. Actually, mark that down even if it’s the consolation game. Sacred Heart beats the Huskies, loses to the Bobcats.