Friday, January 11, 2013

Hockey East Weekend Predictions (January 11-12, 2013)

Hockey East has some intriguing action this weekend, headlined by a home-and-home clash between BC and UNH. Due to limited time constraints this week, I will just be posting my predictions. More in depth previews will return next week.

New Hampshire (13-3-2, 8-2-1 HE) vs. Boston College (12-3-2, 9-2-1 HE)
Friday, 7:00, Conte Forum, Chestnut Hill, MA (NESN)
Saturday, 7:00, Whittemore Center, Durham, NH

This has been one of the more anticipated series of the year, once both teams established themselves as the cream of the crop. Both teams defend home ice. BC wins 3-2 before UNH wins 4-3.

UMass-Lowell (9-7-1, 3-6-1 HE) at Vermont (6-9-4, 3-6-4 HE)
Friday and Saturday, 7:05, Gutterson Field House, Burlington, VT

UML is riding a five game winning streak, while UVM had been play well prior to their 4-1 loss against Merrimack last weekend. The River Hawks win 3-2 and 4-2.

Providence (7-8-3, 5-4-2 HE) vs. UMass-Amherst (7-9-2, 4-6-1 HE)
Friday, 7:00, Mullins Center, Amherst, MA
Saturday, 7:00, Schneider Arena, Providence, RI

This two game series could go either way. With Jon Gillies back for the Friars, he provides a boost. Providence wins 3-2 in Amherst before UMass returns the favor with a 2-1 road win the next night.

Maine (5-12-2, 1-7-2 HE) at Northeastern (6-10-1, 3-8-1 HE)
Friday, 7:00, Matthews Arena, Boston, MA

The battle of the two coaches on the hot seat. Things got uglier last Saturday night for both coaches, as both their teams fell to Atlantic Hockey Association competition, on home ice. I keep thinking Maine is going to turn the corner. I think they eek out a win tonight 2-1.

Boston University (11-7-0, 8-4-0 HE) at Merrimack (7-8-4, 5-4-1 HE)
Friday, 7:30, Lawler Arena, North Andover, MA

All four of BU's conference losses have come against BC or UNH. The Terriers defeated Merrimack 3-1 in November. This game should be close, but BU's superior skill prevails, 4-2.

Maine (5-12-2, 1-7-2 HE) at Merrimack (7-8-4, 5-4-1 HE)
Saturday, 7:00, Lawler Arena, North Andover, MA

These two teams have met in the quarterfinals the last two years. There is some bad blood. Saturday's tilt will be the first of three in a row between these clubs. Next weekend in Orono should get chippy. For tonight, Merrimack wins on home ice 3-1.