NCAA Playoff Regional Round

A few weeks ago i told you the College Hockey Playoffs are the appetizer for the NHL Playoffs. I hope everyone enjoyed the chips and dip but now its time for the shrimp cocktail.

WEST SEED

CLOUD STATE VS AMERICAN INT.

ST_CLOUD_VS_AIC

St. Cloud State gets the number one overall seed in spite of the fact they lost to Duluth in the NCHC Championship game… Which upsets me but moving on! They are in a serious miss match against American Int. coming off winning their first Atlantic Hockey Championship. AIC is a good team, but they won’t hold a candle to St. Cloud. Not to mention St. Cloud will be ready to smash any opponent after their loss to Duluth.

 

OHIO STATE VS DENVER

OSU_VS_DENVER

The second pairing in the east bracket is OSU vs Denver. This matchup is interesting. Ohio State was incredible for most of the season but has had a tough run in the last few weeks. They lost in the Semifinals of the Big Ten Tournament to Penn State. They just haven’t seemed to be the same in the final stages of the season. Denver on the other hand is doing the exact opposite. They are on the rise and playing great hockey. This will be an interesting matchup, but no matter who wins they have to play St. Cloud in the next round, which is a tough matchup for either team.

 

MIDWEST SEED

MINNESOTA DULUTH VS BOWLING GREEN

Duluth_vs_Bowling_Green

The true number one seed, and NCHC Champions Minnesota Duluth take on the WHCA runner up Bowling Green. I think Bowling Green will keep this game closer than most people think. They had some big wins over ranked opponents this year, they took Minnesota State to OT in the WCHA Championship Game. Most importantly they have been consistently winning all year. They have not dipped at any point this season, and they deserve credit for that.

 

ARIZONA STATE VS QUINNIPIAC

ASU_VS_Q

The Hockey Gods are kind gods. As Arizona State has qualified for their first NCAA Playoffs. But they didn’t just qualify they drew a winnable game. Quinnipiac got bounced early from the ECAC tournament, and have not looked good as of late. Arizona State has been sitting and waiting hoping for their shot. They have been given it, and I like the Sun Devils to show out on a big stage.

 

EAST SEED

MINNESOTA STATE VS PROVIDENCE

MINN_ST_VS_PROVIDENCE

How much do you love the run the Mavericks are on right now? The little school that could won the WCHA and are poised to make a run in the tournament. Their first test is no pushover as Providence will but up a big fight. This is the battle of two smaller traditional hockey schools. Should be a fun one.

 

CORNELL VS NORTHEASTERN

CORNELL_VS_NORTHEASTERN

Northeastern won the Hockey East. But both teams have been studs all year, and match up favorably. There isn’t much to compare these two team against each other. They did not play this year, and both teams were ranked all year. The only team that both teams played was Union. Northeastern played them earlier in the year and lost both games. Cornell has beaten up on Union all year. So if you want to go off that then tip the hat to Andy Bernard’s Big Red.

 

NORTH EAST SEED

MASSACHUSETTS VS HARVARD

UMASS_VS_HARVARD

First thing can we just say this is a group of death. Any one of these four teams could make the Frozen four. So UMass as the top seed is literally just a formality. Harvard plays in a tougher conference, against tougher opponents. UMass didn’t even win their conference tournament. You smell that? Smells like an upset.

 

NOTRE DAME VS CLARKSON

NOTRE_DAME_VS_CLARKSON

The battle of Conference Champions. Notre Dame winning the Big Ten and Clarkson winning the ECAC. This is one is anybody’s guess. These teams have been in the middle of the standings all year and both these teams won their conference tournaments.

 

So that’s the breakdown of the first round. Games start on Friday so I will have a video up for everyone by the end of the week. Giving my predictions for the regionals all the way to who I think will be this year’s NCAA Champion.

Written by Johnny Violence

The lead NHL/Hockey writer for Thoughts From The Bench.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: