December 16, 2011

College power ratings: BC closes out first half in the top spot

Every Friday during the season, New England Hockey Journal will present its power ratings of the region's 20 Division 1 men's teams.

1. Boston College (12-6-0, 9-4-0 Hockey East)

BC junior defenseman Brian Dumoulin (photo: Dave Arnold Photography)

BC junior defenseman Brian Dumoulin (photo: Dave Arnold Photography)

Despite UMass-Lowell taking four penalties in the first period Friday, BC surrendered two goals and couldn’t catch up, falling 3-2 to the surging River Hawks in its last game until Dec. 29.

2. Merrimack (10-2-2, 7-2-1 Hockey East)

Merrimack only has one win against a Hockey East team since Nov. 11, and had to hang on tight for a 1-1 draw to Colgate, the second-place team in the ECAC, on Saturday.

3. UMass-Lowell (10-5-0, 7-4-0 Hockey East)

The River Hawks apparently didn’t pay attention to the script when they split their weekend against BC and Northeastern, beating the first-place Eagles Friday but falling to the seventh-place Huskies Saturday.

4. Boston University (10-5-1, 8-4-1 Hockey East)

The Terriers were all set to move up in our ratings this week off of a pair of road wins at UNH and Maine, led by a 58-for-60 save performance by Kieran Millan, but that was followed by the news that Corey Trivino, the team’s leading scorer (13-4–17) and the top goal scorer in Hockey East, was dismissed from the team after being arrested on charges he tried to rape a resident assistant at the school. Trivino’s dismissal creates a gigantic hole in the BU offense, which had no other scorer with double-digit goals.

5. Harvard (4-3-3, 3-3-2 ECAC Hockey)

The Crimson, who have the nation's top power play, must play at North Dakota twice, play a home-and-home with Union, and play at RPI before their Jan. 14 tilt with Boston University at Fenway. Maybe best not to look ahead.

6. Yale (6-5-1, 4-2-0 ECAC Hockey)

The Elis limped to the finish of their first semester with losses at Brown and UMass. It's a different year in New Haven, Conn.

7. Quinnipiac (11-6-3, 3-4-3 ECAC Hockey)

The Bobcats pushed to 8-1-2 at home after wins over Sacred Heart and Princeton last weekend.

8. Northeastern (7-7-2, 4-7-2 Hockey East)

Northeastern is the hottest team in Hockey East at the halfway point, riding the nation’s best win streak (six games). The Huskies have outscored their opponents 27-9 during that stretch.

9. Providence (8-7-1, 6-4-0 Hockey East)

Providence was idle over the weekend, and gets back to it on New Year’s Day against Brown. The last time the Friars had this many wins at this point in the season was 2005-06, when they finished 17-16-3 and lost to UNH in the Hockey East quarterfinals.

10. Holy Cross (8-7-0, 6-4-0 Atlantic Hockey)

A short-handed goal and two power-play goals helped the Crusaders beat Army 3-1. No Holy Cross player has more than 10 points.

11. Maine (6-7-2, 5-6-1 Hockey East)

The Black Bears woke up the tiger a bit on Saturday, scoring first against BU only to see the Terriers score five unanswered to end Maine’s three-game win streak.

12. Dartmouth (5-5-1, 3-3-1 ECAC Hockey)

The Big Green collected only five points in their last seven games before Christmas break.

13. New Hampshire (6-9-2, 4-7-1 Hockey East)

The Wildcats go into their 22-day holiday break with one win in their last five games, and trotted out freshman goaltender Casey DeSmith (Rochester, N.H.) for his first collegiate action in Friday’s loss to BU rather than veteran Matt Di Girolamo, whose 3.36 goals against average and .885 save percentage are well off his career numbers (2.65, .915).

14. Bentley (5-8-3, 5-3-2 Atlantic Hockey)

After 4-2 win at UConn, that helped them finish off the pre-holiday part of their schedule on a 4-3-2 run, the Falcons are off until Jan. 1 at Yale.

15. UMass (5-7-4, 2-6-3 Hockey East)

It’s a 22-day break for the Minutemen, who are 5-0-3 at home but won’t get back to the friendly-yet-spacious confines of the Mullins Center until Jan. 13. They’ll play four games in three different venues before that – two at Germain Arena in Estero, Fla., during the Florida College Classic, one at Providence’s Schneider Arena and finally Jan. 7’s outdoor excursion at Fenway Park against Vermont.

16. UConn (5-9-2, 4-6-1 Atlantic Hockey)

Huskies host Army next in first round of UConn Classic on Dec. 29.

17. Brown (4-6-1, 3-3-0 ECAC Hockey)

We know Brown's ceiling after a first semester in which it posted wins against Cornell, Union and Yale.

18. Vermont (3-11-1, 1-9-1 Hockey East)

The Catamounts’ opponent on Saturday, St. Lawrence, is tied for fourth in ECAC, but it’s definitely the odd one out of the group of five teams sharing their spot in the standings, with a 6-10-0 overall record and a negative-18 goal differential.

19. AIC (3-14-2, 2-9-2 Atlantic Hockey)

Yellow Jackets don’t play again until Jan. 10 at Rensselaer.

20. Sacred Heart (1-16-1, 0-10-1 Atlantic Hockey)

Pioneers were outscored 10-2 in losses to Quinnipiac and Dartmouth.

Hockeyjournal.com’s weekly Division I power ratings are comprised by college hockey writers Andrew Merritt, Dan Guttenplan, Allen Lessels and Mike Zhe. They can be reached at feedback@hockeyjournal.com.