Archive for the 'ECAC' Category

Three Things I Think: ECAC 12/1

Tuesday, December 1st, 2015

Another successful weekend in non-conference play has the conference in pretty good shape going forward. In terms of strength of schedule according to Krach, league teams have been pretty successful and have played some of the more difficult schedules in college hockey. The ECAC owns 10 of the top 18 schedules nationally, which is a direct consequence of the league’s non-conference winning percentage. The inter-conference record dropped a tad over the weekend, but still sits at a national best of .648. This all means good things, as the ECAC currently has seven of the top 16 teams in the Pairwise. It probably won’t stay at that, but its fun to look at because there still is good chance the league will have four, maybe five teams. (more…)

Three Things I Think: ECAC 11/24

Tuesday, November 24th, 2015

As each week moves along, we learn more about all the teams in the conference. Over the weekend, RPI continued its seven game unbeaten streak, Quinnipiac remained undefeated and SLU made inroads and proved that maybe they belong in the conversation as well. Clarkson provided QU with its first blemish on the season, in a 1-1 tie in Hamden but were unable to back it up, dropping a 3-0 game to a much improved Princeton team that I will talk about in more depth below.

Rensselaer and Quinnipiac are tied at the top of standings, as the Bobcats squandered their chances to take an outright lead with two ties. Both teams are now 4-0-2 and have 10 points already in the bank. Harvard and Cornell are nipping on their heels, as the Big Red picked up a win at Brown and an impressive tie at Yale, but every team in the top six remain within three points of the lead. The Pairwise continues to be bloated, but this weekend will prove to us just how many teams are capable of being in the tournament. There are big games up and down the schedule this weekend. Harvard and RPI participate with Notre Dame and Western Michigan in the Shillelagh Tournament in South Bend. Dartmouth travels for a pair against Michigan, while Colgate and Brown participate in the Friendship Four. All told, the ECAC has six teams in the top 15 of the Pairwise, thanks mainly to a .667 win percentage in non-conference contests.

If you haven’t read the wonderful piece by CHN editor, Adam Wodon, on the Big Ten’s attempt to put an age limit in college hockey, I highly suggest you read it in the next couple of days. Also, as is normall customary for me, I would like wish all my readers a very Happy Thanksgiving. I hope everyone enjoys their families and falls asleep because of all the Triptofan. Oh and don’t forget there are great college hockey games on Friday morning, from Belfast when Colgate and Brown open the Friendship Four on NESN and TSN at 11am eastern time. (more…)

Weekend Preview: ECAC 11/19

Thursday, November 19th, 2015

Most teams will be in conference action this weekend, while Union, Dartmouth and Harvard all have the weekend off. RPI plays a lone non-conference game on the road against Bentley. One has to wonder how long Quinnipiac’s winning streak will go on, as it approaches the absurd at this point. The 11 game winning streak to start the season is the longest such streak to start a year, since Air Force won 12 to begin the 2008-09 season. The Bobcats will host the North Country teams this weekend, after a 6-2 triumph on Tuesday against a struggling Uconn squad. Cornell-Yale looks to be the best game on the docket, but either Quinnipiac games should  also be entertaining.

With RPI playing a lone non-conference game, its lead on Quinnipiac sits at two and the Bobcats will take the lead in the Standings this weekend playing two conference games. The Pairwise also looks good, but I caution one in taking too large of a look, but as a whole the league is in good position. Also check out my Three Things I Think from earlier in the week and a feature on RPI’s Cam Hackett. (more…)

Three Things I Think: ECAC 11/17

Tuesday, November 17th, 2015

Another weekend in conference action, again there were surprises. Brown left the weekend with three points, and almost four as it had an overtime goal disallowed that probably shouldn’t have been. RPI picked up three points and picked up a win against Yale on Friday, in arguably the biggest upset of the weekend. Quinnipiac continued to roll with wins over Harvard, Dartmouth and UConn. They have looked good and this Quinnipiac team is scary offensively, which I will talk about below. It is still much too early to look at the league standings but RPI is the surprise early leader by two points over QU, which has two games in hand.

The CHN pairwise is up, but I will caution against looking too deeply at it as the sample size is much to small. But the good trend is the number of ECAC teams that are in the top 20 and in the tournament spots today. QU sits at the top with their undefeated record, Cornell, Harvard, St. Lawrence ,Yale and Clarkson join it in the top 15. Rensselaer also sits on the outside looking in at number 23. But again it is much too early, what the league needs to do is continue its dominance in non-conference play that is has shown early in the season. Also be sure to check out my feature on Rensselaer’s Cam Hackett, who is a former Cornell commit and excelling in the absence of Jason Kasdorf


Weekend Preview: ECAC 11/13

Friday, November 13th, 2015

Another full weekend of conference games will again help us to sort out the contenders from the pretenders. The highlight of the weekend will indeed be Quinnipiac and Harvard in Hamden on Friday night. The two heavyweights will battle in what could ultimately be a title match preview. The other highlight of the weekend, pits the North Country rivals, SLU and Clarkson, against each other. In all honesty, it is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, rivalry in the league.  Those are just two of the premier matchups that dot the schedule this week, without further ado here are some thoughts for the upcoming weekend.


Harvard at Quinnipiac

We should learn a lot about these two in this game. Harvard has looked good in its minimal action so far and it will take on an unblemished Quinnipiac team that is now 8-0-0 on the season. For Harvard, this will probably be the toughest test for them to date because unlike Yale, QU has a dangerous offense that sends a ton of great chances toward the net. We all know that Harvard has the offense, but whether or not its defense will hold up against a team like QU, is something that we have no idea about yet. It looked good against Yale, but there wasn’t much in the way of dangerous up and down play in that game. This will also be the Crimson’s first big road test, against a good team. For Quinnipiac, it still needs a tough road test to quell the juries. This home game, however, could go a long way in telling us if they belong in the tier as Yale and Harvard.

Prediction: 5-2 Harvard (more…)

Three Things I Think: ECAC 11/11

Wednesday, November 11th, 2015

The first full weekend of the conference slate always tells us a lot, but it also tells us that we shouldn’t overreact to some of the results. Rensselaer took three out of four points in the North Country, while Union took a pair of points against SLU. The results were the most surprising in the league last weekend, as I really like both St. Lawrence and Clarkson. Both are going to be strong teams in the league this year. The three points, gives RPI seven out of eight possible points in ECAC play. It is an impressive start for a team that I put seventh in preseason but has struggled , save a win against Boston College. But lets not forget that last year, RPI raced out of the gates to lead for a while then dropped off. This year it seems more sustainable because of the lack of injury bug that it found last season.

The three elite teams, in Harvard, Yale and Quinnipiac all had come from behind victories over the weekend to Brown, Dartmouth and Cornell respectively. I was flying cross country that night and left Chicago knowing that Cornell had a 3-0 lead when I took off, while Yale trailed Dartmouth 2-0. QU and Yale both scored four unanswered to take home the wins. It seems as though both Yale and Harvard took a bit to come out of the emotional high that was the game at the Bright-Landry Hockey Center on Friday night. I will talk about that more below, but without further ado here are some thoughts.

I would also like to take this time, seeing it is Veterans day, to thank all my readers that have served in the armed forces. It is much appreciated what you have done and I hope you hear this a bunch today or this week.


Three Things I Think: ECAC 11/4

Wednesday, November 4th, 2015

The opening of ECAC league play, came with bangs as both Rensselaer and Harvard picked up sweeps. Harvard was probably not a surprise,  but RPI certainly was. The Engineers have gotten off to a weird start to its season, at 1-4 but its win came against a strong Boston College team that has since gone 5-0-0. The weekend was certainly what the doctor ordered and I will talk about it more in depth below.

The ECAC again had a solid weekend in non-conference action, as it went 5-3-1 on the weekend. St. Lawrence picked up a win and a tie on the road against Penn State, Cornell swept Niagara, Brown lost a long game to Holy Cross and Colgate was swept by Providence. For all intensive purposes, the week was a success mainly because Princeton and Yale swept their respective Hockey East opponents at the Capital City Classic. Yale thrashed a previously unbeaten UMass team and Princeton defeated struggling Maine. The league still holds a .651 win percentage in non-league tilts, but are only 15-11-3 against the league’s other than the Atlantic. (more…)

ECAC Weekend Preview Oct. 29th

Thursday, October 29th, 2015

This week will mark the beginning of the season for the six Ivy League schools. Yale and Princeton will open their seasons at the Capital City Classic, Cornell will play a pair with Niagara, Brown will play host to Holy Cross all the while Dartmouth and Harvard play a set of league games. Union and Rensselaer will open the conference slate on Friday in Schenectady, where Union will be looking to lick their wounds after a winless weekend and RPI will be looking to rebound after a few rough weekends.

St. Lawrence is playing a pair of games at Penn State this weekend, Thursday and Friday nights so mark your calendars for that series. I am actually watching it now, which means I am really late in writing this. Check out this week’s Three Things I Think, from earlier in the week, also check out Chris’ article on Yale and Clarkson was also our CHN team of the Week.  Ivy fans out there should check out the league preview again and the things to watch for I did in the preseason.

There are many great non-league matchups throughout the league, as it will look to improve upon its already great inter-conference record. Without further ado here are some thoughts on this weekend’s matchups. (more…)

Three Things I Think: ECAC Oct. 26

Monday, October 26th, 2015

The weekend probably couldn’t be drawn up any better, as league teams went 5-1-0 against NCHC competition on the weekend. Quinnipiac continues to impress with its early play, which I will talk about below, St. Lawrence picked up the most impressive win of the weekend and Clarkson had an impressive weekend in a weekend sweep. Colgate, whom I will also talk about below, swept RIT in a weekend series, while Union struggled in a winless weekend against traditional powers.

It is early, but the ECAC leads all conferences in inter-conference record at 21-10-3 (.662). This record should only improve in the coming weeks, as ECAC favorites Harvard and Yale begin play.  The Ivies will join the party this week and ECAC league play will also begin this week,with RPI visiting Union for each team’s ECAC opener. Harvard and Dartmouth will also play  a pair this weekend to open their seasons, beginning with a game at Thompson Arena on Saturday. (more…)

SCSU/QU Highlights Big Non-Conference Weekend in the ECAC

Thursday, October 22nd, 2015

About three seasons ago, to have league teams playing the likes of Miami, St. Cloud State, Michigan and UNH all on the same weekend would have probably been a stretch. This week four of the top programs will visit league rinks. St. Lawrence will host Miami at Appelton, Michigan will travel to Union and RPI, UNH visits Messa rink to play Union and finally two undefeated teams will faceoff in Hamden, as Quinipiac plays host to St. Cloud. The visit from Michigan will mark its first trip to an ECAC rink since, January 3rd 1988.

The highlight of the weekend will be St. Cloud and Quinnipiac. Both teams enter the weekend undefeated, at 4-0. Quinnipiac is in dire need of a team to challenge them in non-conference play, which the Huskies certainly will. While Quinnipiac has played the likes of Holy Cross, Arizona State and Maine, its opponent is coming off a weekend sweep of Minnesota State. Quinnipiac looked the part as a good team on Tuesday against Maine, dominating its opponent on the scoreboard and in shots, but a real challenge is something they have yet to receive.

The Bobcats will need to find a way to beat Charlie Lindgren, who has three shutouts in his three starts. Last weekend against Minnesota State, he sent aside all 54 of the shots that he saw.The two teams split a weekend series last season, with Quinnipiac picking up a 4-1 win against Lindgren in the finale of that series. If anything, Quinnipiac has the confidence that it cant beat the Huskies. Based on how Quinnipiac played against Maine on Tuesday, I feel as though they may again be highly underrated. They have a huge chance to prove me right this weekend. (more…)