Atlantic Hockey Picks: February 14-17

Last Week:

Dan: 5-3-2
Chris: 6-2-2

On The Season:
Dan: 120-48-20 (.691)
Chris: 110-58-20 (.638)

This Week’s Picks:

Friday, February 14 and Saturday, February 15
Bentley at Rochester Institute of Technology
Chris: It’s all about the standings now, and this series pits the fourth-place Tigers against the fifth-place Falcons with a mere three points separating the two. RIT does have a pair of games in hand, so Bentley needs at least a split. I don’t think that happens. RIT sweeps.
Dan: Bentley is playing absolutely phenomenal hockey, but I think the Falcons need a full sweep in order to finish fourth in the league standings, unless something weird happens along the way. I think a split keeps them in play for a fifth place finish, but anything less than that all but guarantees Bentley is playing on the first weekend. As a side note to this series, I’d like to point out that I officially lost count of the number of years where I found an excuse not to go to Rochester. This time, I’m legitimately sad because Chris and Ed are my hockey blood brothers. Split.

Army West Point at Mercyhurst
Chris: These are games the Black Knights need in order to keep within striking distance of American International and Sacred Heart. I think they’ll hold serve. Army West Point sweeps.
Dan: This is a huge weekend for Army West Point because Mercyhurst is locked into the No. 11 spot. So a good showing here will do wonders to recreate some magic from earlier in the season. Army West Point sweeps.

Robert Morris at Holy Cross
Chris: The Colonials are two points behind Bentley for the final bye position, and their remaining six games are against the bottom three teams in the standings. But I think Holy Cross takes at least one at home. Split.
Dan: Having RMU breathe down Bentley’s neck with the head-to-head win is why I think the Colonials will earn a bye. But Holy Cross remains a team nobody wants to play. I think RMU takes one out east, and I feel like this weekend series is going to be good, old-fashioned fun. Split.

American International at Canisius
Chris: The Yellow Jackets are in first place thanks to a convincing 6-2 win over Sacred Heart on Tuesday. They need to avoid a letdown in Buffalo. I’m picking an AIC sweep.
Dan: If you’d pick against AIC right now, you’d be crazy. The Yellow Jackets are peaking at the right time, and like a Justin Timberlake song, someone in the background is saying, “Look who has their swagger back.” That absolutely wasn’t for my wife on Valentine’s Day. AIC sweeps.

Saturday, February 15 and Sunday, February 16
Niagara at Sacred Heart
Chris: Did AIC stop the Pioneers’ late season momentum, or was Tuesday just a bump in the road? I’m going with the latter. SHU sweeps.
Dan: I use the term “under the hood” entirely too much, but we’ve seen how Sacred Heart can bounce back from a potentially-deflating loss. I think this weekend is a good opportunity to remind us what exists under the hood in the engine block. SHU sweeps.

Friday, February 14 and Monday, February 17
Air Force vs. Colorado College
Chris: Colorado College hosts on Friday, with Monday’s game being held outdoors at Falcons stadium. It’s the (thankfully) only outdoor college hockey game this season. I think CC will win inside and out. Colorado College sweeps.
Dan: Colorado College is less than 10 miles away from Air Force, but there is an added altitude difference from one place to another. The 10 minute drive sends you up to about 6,600 feet, where Falcon Stadium is the second-highest FBS football stadium. Playing in that indoors is bad enough, but factor in some snow and wind chill – and it’s going to be brutal. Air Force is going to win that game  handily. Split the weekend, though.