Gopher Hockey & Basketball Update 19 Mar 13

The University of Minnesota men’s hockey team re-claimed the top spot in this week’s USCHO-dot-com national poll. The Gophers received 22 first-place votes moving ahead of Quinnipiac, which received 27 first-place votes, but was lower on other ballots. St. Cloud is ranked seventh and Minnesota State-Mankato moved up two spots to eighth in this week’s rankings. All three of those Minnesota-based teams will be involved in this week’s WCHA Final Five in St. Paul. The Golden Gopher women’s team remained the top-ranked club in women’s hockey, sitting on a 39-and-0 season record. The Minnesota women are in this weekend’s NCAA Frozen Four in Minneapolis.

Here is this week’s schedule of men’s college hockey games in the WCHA Final Five at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul:

Thursday: #8 Minnesota State-Mankato vs. #14 Wisconsin, 2pm,
Thursday: #6 North Dakota vs. Colorado College, 7pm
Friday: Minnesota State-Mankato/Wisconsin winner vs. #7 St. Cloud State, 2pm,
Friday: North Dakota/Colorado College winner vs. #1 Minnesota, 7pm,
Saturday: Championship Game, 7pm,

Here is this week’s schedule of women’s college hockey games at the NCAA Division I Frozen Four at Ridder Arena in Minneapolis:

Friday: #1 Minnesota vs. #4 Boston College, 5pm,
Friday: #3 Boston University vs. #8 Mercyhurst, 8pm,
Sunday: Championship Game, 3pm,

The University of Minnesota women’s basketball team will host a Women’s National Invitational Tournament game at Williams Arena on Friday night. The field of 64 teams for the W-NIT was announced last night. The Golden Gophers will entertain Ball State on Friday, with a gametime set to be released later today. Minnesota finished the regular season with an 18-and-13 overall mark and 7-and-9 in the Big Ten. They were considered a fringe NCAA Tourney bubble team entering the Big Ten Tournament, but lost the opening game to Ohio State, dashing any hopes of an at-large berth. So, the W-NIT invitation was expected and received last night. Ball State enters Friday’s game with a 15-and-15 record.

The Golden Gopher men’s basketball team will leave Minneapolis tomorrow, heading to Austin, Texas, for Friday’s NCAA Tournament game against UCLA. Minnesota is the eleventh-seed in the South Region, while the Bruins are the sixth-seed. The Gophers are scheduled to arrive in the Lone Star State late tomorrow afternoon in preparation for Thursday’s media obligations and a team workout at the Frank Erwin Center on the University of Texas campus, where Friday’s game will be played. Tip time for Friday is set for 8:57 p.m.