U.S. College Hockey playoffs are well underway. The league champions across the country have been crowned. Now the field for the 16 team NCAA tournament has been announced all with hopes of punching a ticket to the Frozen Four in April.
The 16 teams are divided into 4 regions and there are a few Express alumni in the tournament.
Brandon Yip's Boston University Terriers have earned the number 1 seed in the Northeast Regional. They're red hot right now and have a shot to win it all. This weekend they won the Hockey East Championship with a 1-0 win over UMass Lowell. BU is 20-2-3 since January and 13-0-2 on the road or a neutral site in that time.
The 3 other number one seeds are Notre Dame (Midwest), Patrick Weircioch's Denver Pioneers (West) and Michigan (East)
The 6 conference champions received automatic bids to the tournament. BU (Hockey East), Air Force (Atlantic Hockey), Brad Hunt's Bemidji State Beavers (College Hockey America), Notre Dame (CCHA), Yale (ECAC) and Minnesota-Duluth (WCHA).
The rest of the field was filled out with at large bids. Cornell, Denver, Miami (Ohio), Michigan, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Tyler McNeely's Northeastern Huskies who lost in overtime in the Hockey East semi finals, Ohio State, Princeton and Vermont.
This year marks the first time since 1994 that Northeastern has qualified for the tournament.
Regional play begins Friday and Saturday in Bridgeport, Conn. (East Regional), Grand Rapids, Mich. (Midwest), Manchester, N.H. (Northeast) and Minneapolis (West).
In Manchester, No. 1 BU faces No. 4 Ohio State, while No. 2 North Dakota faces No. 3 New Hampshire.
In Grand Rapids, No. 1 Notre Dame plays No. 4 Bemidji State, and No. 2 Northeastern takes on No. 3 Cornell.
In Bridgeport, No. 1 Michigan faces No. 4 Air Force, while No. 2 Yale faces No. 3 Vermont.
In Minneapolis, No. 1 Denver plays No. 4 Miami (Ohio), and No. 2 Minnesota-Duluth takes on No. 3 Princeton.