Welcome to our college hockey blog: “Road to the Frozen Four.”
Here Jenn Menendez and Sam Werner will keep you up to date as teams around the country vie to make it to Pittsburgh April 11 and 13 for the Frozen Four.
The college hockey postseason is in full swing across much of the country beginning this weekend - including over on Neville Island where Robert Morris will host Sacred Heart for a best-of-three series at 84 Lumber Arena. First game is tonight, 7:05 p.m.
Some key dates to keep in mind:
- March 24: The NCAA will unveil the field of 16 teams that have reached the national tournament on a selection show at 9 p.m. on ESPNU.
- March 29-31: Four regional sites will host regional semifinals and finals - Manchester, N.H., Providence, R.I., Toledo, Ohio, and Grand Rapids, Mich. as the field whittles down to four.
- April 11 and 13: The Frozen Four semifinals and national title game at Consol Energy Center.
Jenn Menendez’ background: I was a longtime University of Maine beat writer before relocating to Pittsburgh in the fall of 2011, and travelled to several NCAA tournaments and three Frozen Four’s covering the storied Black Bears. I first fell for the game on a cold winter night at New Hampshire as an undergrad when the boards at old Snively Arena rattled and shook from a nasty hit in the corner. Couldn’t get enough of the stuff.
College hockey is a really entertaining level of hockey, and much like college hoops I think you’ll find it has that extra touch of heart. Really excited to be back in the rink this winter.
Sam Werner’s background: I've covered college hockey in some form or fashion for the past six years. I covered Notre Dame for four years when I worked at the student newspaper, The Observer. During that time, I was fortunate enough to cover three NCAA Tournament trips and two Frozen Fours. I can honestly say that, of all the events I've ever covered, the Frozen Four has probably been my favorite.
I love college hockey because it combines the rich tradition and pageantry of college sports with the excitement and quick pace of, well, high-quality hockey. Whether it's the band playing a school's fight song, or just student sections chanting "sieve" over and over again at an opposing goalie, college hockey games are unique events and the sport is almost a subculture unto itself.
I couldn't be more excited to be covering the Frozen Four in Pittsburgh this year. While the city isn't a traditional college hockey market, I have no doubt the sport will be embraced by this "Hockeytahn."