One of the most underrated sporting events in my opinion is NCAA Men’s Hockey Tournament. This year there are four great teams competing for the championship. These games are filled with big hits, breakaways, and a surplus of goals. You may not even know any players in the beginning on the ice but the games are so action-packed it doesn’t even matter.
Eastern Semifinal (No. 1 Quinnipiac vs. No. 2 Boston College)
Pick: Boston College
Players to watch: BC-G, Thatcher Demko/ C, Ryan Fitzgerald/ RW, Alex Tuch. QUIN-RW, Sam Anas/ RW, Tim Clifton/ G, Michael Garteig
The way I see it is Boston Colleges top liners are just simply better than Quinnipiac’s which will play the biggest role. In Boston College’s quarterfinal game against Minnesota-Duluth, goalie Thatcher Demko put on a clinic with great save after great save. A draftee of the Vancouver Canucks, Demko has only allowed three goals in the first two games. In the first round game sophomore sniper Alex Tuch scored two great goals. In the games I watched no one really wowed me from Quinnipiac other than goaltender Michael Garteig. Garteig (31-2-7) this season only lost two games in regulation which is unbelievable, for lack of a better term. I see this game coming out low scoring and Quinnipiac being out-matched by Boston Colleges top lines.
Western Semifinal (No. 1 North Dakota vs. No. 2 Denver)
Pick: North Dakota
Players to Watch: ND-RW, Brock Boeser/ C, Nick Schmaltz. DEN-C, Danton Heinen/ C, Dylan Gambrell
Denver has a high powered offense that has scored 13 goals in the first two games in the tournament. Alongside freshman Dylan Gambrell is another four freshmen that are starters for Denver. Watch for the fab-five freshmen to make an impact on the game. The men’s hockey league powerhouse North Dakota has the job of stopping this potent Denver offense. Brock Boeser is North Dakota’s point leader and Brock doesn’t look to slow down now. North Dakota has a lot of tournament experience on the team which can be key in the Frozen Four. In a high scoring game anything can happen, but in my opinion North Dakota will be to much to handle for Denver.