Dunkin' Donuts Center - Providence, R.I.
Canisius finished 12-13-2 in Atlantic Hockey, and have earned the program's first *ever* tournament berth via a Cinderella run through the conference tournament. The Griffins are on an 8-game winning streak, trouncing Mercyhurst 7-2 in the tournament final. Junior Kyle Gibbons (20-22--42) leads the Griffins in all major offensive categories, and no one is within .25 ppg of him, and Tony Capobianco (2.35 GAA/0.930 SV%) has been the guy in net all season.
Union is your ECAC tournament champion, defeating brown 3-1 in the final after lighting up Yale 5-0 in the semis. The Dutchmen had an aimless December through February, but got it together for the tournament. Senior Wayne Simpson (16-17-33) is your G/P leader, though junior Daniel Carr is close behind at 16-10--26, and three different defensemen have 18 assists. Colin Stevens (1.62 GAA/0.931 SV%) has seen significant game action, but Troy Grosenick (2.06 GAA/0.928 SV%) has been in net for the big moments.
Boston College finished second to UMass-Lowell by a single point in the regular season and dropped the semifinal of the conference tournament to hated crosstown rival BU, but it's useless to talk about things like this when it comes to the Eagles. What really matters: BC has won 2 of the last 3 / 3 of the last 5 national championships. Parker Milner is lugging around a pedestrian 2.59 GAA/0.912 SV%, but he won a national title last year. Johnny Gaudreau (20-30--50), Steven Whitney (26-19--45), and Pat Mullane (16-27--43) are your biggest dangermen.
Quinnipiac finds itself in the unusual position of leading the nation in the Pairwise. They went 1-0-1 against Ohio State, swept Nebraska-Omaha, and eked out a win at Maine while dominating their ECAC schedule. It's a pretty good way to get the #1 overall seed. KRACH has them at #2 overall, so it isn't all smoke and mirrors, but they still have something to prove in the tournament. The Bobcats will try to do that behind senior Eric Hartzell (1.52 GAA/0.934 SV%) in net. Quinnipiac doesn't score a lot of goals -- senior Jermey Langlois 0.79 ppg (12-18--30) is scoring at the fastest clip, but they really don't let in many either. Should be interesting to see this play out.