It isn't often in college hockey that a team wins three times in one week. So when they do, like Minnesota did with wins over Notre Dame and Alaska-Anchorage (twice), it's hard to knock them off the top.
For the third straight week, the Golden Gophers are the number one team in the USCHO.com poll after receiving 47 of the 50 first-place votes. That's up from 38 last week, which is due in large part to defeating the then-#2 Fighting Irish and being the only team in the top-ten to win twice (let alone three times). They face another top team this weekend when #6 North Dakota visits Mariucci Arena for the final WCHA regular season series between the two rivals.
Boston College and New Hampshire split a home-and-home series this weekend - with each team winning at home -and both moved up in the rankings despite a loss. The Eagles went from third to second and UNH, who received a single first-place vote, went from fourth to third.
Fourth-ranked Quinnipiac, who received two first-place votes, extended their unbeaten streak to 16 games this weekend with a tie and win over RPI.
Notre Dame experienced the biggest fall in the polls after going 1-2 this week. The Fighting Irish defeated Michigan State on Friday but lost the second game in the series with the Spartans in addition to falling to the Gophers.
North Dakota, Denver, Miami, Boston University and Western Michigan round out the top ten.
The rest of the top 20 remains the same as last week with Yale moving up two spots to 12th and Minnesota State falling three to 14th following a pair of overtime losses to Wisconsin. The Badgers, who are on a 10 game unbeaten streak following a 1-7-2 start, were one of 10 teams to receive votes.
And now the usual disclaimers: Polls are for entertainment and have no bearing on NCAA Tournament positions. Those would be the PairWise rankings - found here. Currently New Hampshire, Boston College and Quinnipiac are tied for first while Minnesota is fourth and Notre Dame is fifth. We'll start looking at these more in-depth next week.
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