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Eagles, Terriers Heading in Opposite Directions Leading into Fenway Matchup

Gustav Nyquist and Maine won the Florida College Classic to put them in the poll for the first time this season. (hockeyeastonline.com)

BC and BU have been on opposite trajectories all season as the Terriers have struggled and BC became among the hottest teams in the country. Over the last week, however, things may be beginning to change. BC lost both of their Denver Cup games, including to host and number two Denver. BU did not play in a tournament, but ripped up UMass 7-3 on the road. The rivals play on both ends of Commonwealth Ave. every year, in the Beanpot regularly, and in the Hockey East playoffs, but they have never played at Fenway Park, a feat they will accomplish this weekend as part of a college hockey doubleheader.

BC Slips, Maine Ranked

Miami remains the top team in the nation in this week’s USCHO.com Division I Men’s College Hockey Poll with 45 of 50 first place votes while Denver remained second, grabbing the other five votes and Colorado College holds on to third. Wisconsin is up three spots to fourth and North Dakota inches up a single spot to round out the top five. Half of Hockey East is ranked, led by the Eagles in the seventh spot. UMass-Lowell is 14 and UMass is 16 while Maine makes its season poll debut at 18 and Vermont returns at 19. Maine was expected by many to finish last or near the bottom in the league, but could no longer be ignored.

Tournament Rundown

Most of the action the last couple weeks was in the context of holiday tournaments. The Hockey East results are as follow:

  • UConn College Hockey Classic: UMass finishes second
  • Florida College Classic: Maine wins the tournament, including the final over No. 3 Colorado College
  • Denver Cup: BC drops both games, including the tilt with No. 2 Denver
  • Ledyard Bank Classic: Hockey East dominates as Northestern beats UMass-Lowell in the final
  • Badger Showdown: Merrimack finishes last including lost to host and No. 4 Wisconsin
  • Catamount Cup: host Vermont wins their own tournament

In other regular season games, BU beat UMass and UNH fell at home to No. 8 Cornell.

This week is headlined by the Fenway game, but conference leading New Hampshire leads the undercard with home games against UMass and UMass-Lowell. The Minutemen and River Hawks also play at Northeastern and Merrimack visits Maine.

Standings Update

With 2009 in the rearview, college hockey is in the homestretch as teams will play mostly in conference with a few notable exception, like the Beanpot, leading up to playoffs in March. Hockey East is still tight with fewer than half the games played thus far. UNH remains the leader with 18 points, up two on BC and three on Maine. UMass leads the pack in the middle with 12, followed by UMass-Lowell with 11, Vermont at 10, Northeastern at 9, and Merrimack and BU with 8. Providence remains at the bottom with five points.

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