Four teams in Men's Division I college hockey aim for the ultimate prize this weekend as a new champion will be crowned. Defending champion Boston College was dethroned by upstart Colorado College, before succumbing to Michigan. Joining Michigan in St. Paul, MN this year is fellow Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) rival Notre Dame and two Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) teams in North Dakota and Minnesota-Duluth.
Thursday, April 7, 2011 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN
Notre Dame (CCHA) vs Minnesota-Duluth (WCHA) -- 3:00 PM MST -- ESPN2, ESPN3.com, Leafs TV (Canada)
Michigan (CCHA) vs North Dakota (WCHA) -- 6:30 PM MST -- ESPN2, ESPN3.com, Leafs TV (Canada)
Frozen Four Championship Game
Saturday, April 9, 2011 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN
5:00 PM MST -- ESPN, ESPN3.com, Leafs TV (Canada)
This is the second Frozen Four appearance for the Fighting Irish. In 2008, they lost in the championship game to Boston College. In 2011, they beat both Merrimack, 4-3 in overtime, and New Hampshire, 2-1, to advance to the Frozen Four from the Northeast Regional. Yan Stastny, brother of Avalanche center Paul Stastny, played at Notre Dame from 2001-2003.
The Bulldogs are appearing in the Frozen Four for the fourth time in the school's history. Their last appearance was in 2004 when they lost to eventual champion Denver 5-3 in the semifinals. To advance from the East Regional, Minnesota-Duluth shut-out Union 2-0 and beat Yale 2-1 in overtime. Former Av, Shjon Podein, was a former member of the Bulldogs in the late 1980s.
The Wolverines are making their 24th NCAA Tournament Frozen Four appearance and are seeking their 10th national championship. They beat Nebraska-Omaha 3-2 in overtime on a controversial goal and gutted out a 2-1 win over Colorado College to make it to St. Paul. Luke Moffatt, a 2010 Colorado Avalanche draft pick, did not record a point in the West Regional. Starting Michigan goaltender, Shawn Hunwick, is brother to current Avalanche defenseman Matt Hunwick.
The Fighting Sioux head to St. Paul making their 19th Frozen Four appearance. The club is looking for their eighth national title. North Dakota handily beat Rensselaer 6-0 and thwarted Denver 6-1 to advance from the Midwest Regional. Avs 2007 fourth round pick, Brad Malone, had four points in the regional.
The 2011 Hobey Baker Award will be handed out on Friday, April 8, 2011. Matt Frattin (North Dakota), whose rights are owned by the Toronto Maple Leafs, is one of three finalists. Miami's Andy Miele and Boston College's Cam Atkinson are the other two finalists that make up the Hobey Hat Trick. Miele and Atkinson recently signed professional contracts with the Phoenix Coyotes and Columbus Blue Jackets respectively.