October 2, 2013

Ferris State First Team To Open New Era Of WCHA Hockey In Regular-Season This Weekend

From The WCHA
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Countdown to Faceoff: Forwards  |  Defense  | Goaltending  | Freshman

MADISON, Wis. – A new era in the distinguished 62-year history of the men's Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) launches this coming weekend of October 4-6 as nine of the ten league-member clubs hit the ice for their first competition of the 2013-14 season.

Ferris State will travel to ECAC Hockey-member Colgate for a Saturday-Sunday non-conference set with game one of the series set to get underway at 7:00 pm ET and game two at 4:00 pm ET. Coach Bob Daniels' Bulldogs are the only WCHA team engaged in regular season action this week.

Eight other WCHA teams will play a series of exhibition contests over the coming weekend, with only Alabama Huntsville idle (the Chargers open their season on Oct. 11-12). On Friday night, Alaska Anchorage and new head coach Matt Thomas will host the University of British Columbia at 7:07 pm AT at the Wells Fargo Sports Complex Ice Rink in Anchorage. On Saturday, the Michigan Tech Huskies entertain Laurentian University at 7:07 pm ET at John MacInnes Student Ice Arena in Houghton, the Northern Michigan Wildcats host the USA Under-18 Team at 7:07 pm ET at Berry Events Center in Marquette, the Bowling Green Falcons take on visiting Wilfrid Laurier University at 7:37 pm ET, and the Alaska Nanooks host University of British Columbia at 5:37 pm AT at Carlson Center in Fairbanks. Then on Sunday, host Northern Michigan goes up against Laurentian University at 2:07 pm ET, Lake Superior State entertains the USA Under-18 Team at Taffy Abel Arena at 3:07 pm ET and Minnesota State hosts University of Lethbridge at 5:07 pm CT at Verizon Wireless Center in Mankato.

Looking ahead to the first full weekend of regular season action – Friday, October 11 and Saturday, October 12 – nine league teams will be engaged in non-conference match ups. Alabama Huntsville and first-year head coach Mike Corbett will play at Northeastern (Hockey East Association), Alaska Anchorage will host Air Force (Atlantic Hockey Association), Alaska and Quinnipiac (ECAC Hockey) at the Kendall Hockey Classic at Sullivan Arena, pre-season WCHA favorite Minnesota State will take on host Providence(HEA), Bowling Green will go up against host Union (ECAC Hockey), Michigan Tech heads to Minnesota Duluth (National Collegiate Hockey Conference), Lake Superior State welcomes Robert Morris (AHA), Bemidji State visits St. Cloud State (NCHC), and Northern Michigan plays at Wisconsin (Big 10 Conference).

Then on Tuesday, October 15, there will be a pair of single non-conference games as Ferris State will skate at Mercyhurst (AHA) and Bowling Green hosts Ohio State (Big 10).

Week three of the regular season and the weekend of October 18-20 will continue non-conference competition. Friday-Saturday match ups have Bemidji State hosting Minnesota (Big 10), Lake Superior State playing at Union (ECAC Hockey), Bowling Green welcoming Colgate (ECAC Hockey), Ferris State hosting St. Lawrence (ECAC Hockey), Minnesota State entertaining Connecticut (AHA), Northern Michigan hosting Nebraska Omaha (NCHC), and Alaska hosting Alaska Anchorage, Denver (NCHC) and Western Michigan (NCHC) for the Alaska Goal Rush at Carlson Center. On Friday and Sunday of that weekend, Michigan Tech will play at Notre Dame (HEA). 

The first weekend featuring conference play this season will occur Friday and Saturday, October 25-26, as Michigan Tech and Northern Michigan go home-and-home and Alabama Huntsville hosts Bemidji State. There are a total of 140 WCHA games in 2013-14, with each league-member team playing a total of 28 conference games. Each team will play five other league members four times each and four others two times each. The regular season champion in the men's WCHA is awarded the MacNaughton Cup.

The first round of WCHA playoffs will be contested the weekend of March 14-16, a best-of-three series format that will feature the top eight finishers in regular season competition. The No. 1 seed will host the No. 8 seed, No. 2 will host No. 7, No. 3 will host No. 6 and No. 4 will host No. 5. 

Following the first round, the four winners will advance to the 2014 WCHA Final Five, set for March 21-22 at Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, MI. The two semi-final matchups on Friday will feature the No. 3 seed vs the No. 2 seed at 2:07 pm ET and the No. 4 seed vs the No. 1 seed at 7:07 pm ET. On championship Saturday, the contest for the Broadmoor Trophy and the league's automatic berth into the NCAA tournament will face-off at 7:07 pm ET. 

The 2014 NCAA Men's Division 1 Ice Hockey Championship tournament will open the weekend of March 28-30 with four regionals. On Friday and Saturday, the NCAA East Regional will be held at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, CT while the NCAA Midwest Regional will be played at US Bank Arena in Cincinnati, OH. On Saturday and Sunday, the NCAA Northeast Regional will be held at DCU Center in Worcester, MA and the NCAA West Regional will be at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN. 

The four regional winners will then advance to the 2014 NCAA Men's Frozen Four (national championship), to be contested Thursday, April 10 and Saturday, April 12 at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA.

See more at: http://www.wcha.com/men/pres1314/201310/oct1wcm.php#sthash.saIEEVzq.dpuf

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