March 11 2016
The NCAA Selection Committee unveiled its much-anticipated 2016 Division III Women's Ice Hockey Tournament field on Monday morning. In what has become a nearly annual tradition, the Elmira College women’s ice hockey team are among the final eight for the fourth consecutive year and will make its twelfth appearance in the NCAA Tournament since 2002. The Soaring Eagles travel for a quarterfinal matchup at Adrian College at 7:00 p.m. tomorrow Saturday, March 12th.
Coming into Monday morning's announcement with a strong resume and a 21-4-1 record, there were no guarantees for EC after stumbling to ninth-ranked Utica College 5-1 in the semifinals of the ECAC West Tournament. With only three at-large bids up for grabs, the Elmira women had to wait until the end of the selection show before hearing their name called. Second-seeded Adrian posted a 25-2-1 record en route to Northern Collegiate Hockey Association regular-season and tournament championships. The Bulldogs secured the conference’s automatic bid with a 2-0 shutout of St. Norbert College in the NCHA Slaats Cup Championship Game on Sunday, March 6th.
Saturday’s games is a rematch of a season-opening game on Halloween, which was the only meeting in history between the two programs. Adrian won that contest, 4-1, on neutral ice at Norwich University. The Purple and Gold will be motivated to avenge that early season loss, but will contend with the emotion of what is sure to be an electric environment for the Adrian women’s first-ever NCAA Tournament home game.
Joining Elmira and Adrian at the bottom half of the bracket is the University of St. Thomas, Minnesota, and the University of Wisconsin at River Falls. St. Thomas secured its spot after besting Bethel College 2-1 in the MIAC Championship on Saturday. Wisconsin-River Falls secured an at-large bid after dispatching Wisconsin-Stevens Point 4-1 in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) O'Brien Cup Championship.
The top half of the bracket is headlined by Plattsburgh State, who represents the NCAA Tournament’s top seed for the fourth straight year after downing Utica College 8-0 in the ECAC West Championship Game. The Cardinals face eighth-seeded Amherst College, an at-large selection that fell in overtime to Middlebury College 5-4 in the NESCAC Championship Game. The other matchup in the top half of the bracket features Middlebury against fifth-seeded University of Massachusetts at Boston, which shocked NEHC-favorite Norwich University with a 2-0 win in the conference final to earn a first-ever NCAA Tournament bid.
Those unable to make it to Saturday's game can follow along at home with Adrian’s live video feed and live stats.
LIVE VIDEO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2_SFuoW0VA