Irish start Frozen Four tonight

Notre Dame celebrates after a tournament win in the 2008 Frozen Four.

The NCAA Frozen Four hockey tournament is also in its Sweet 16 mode this weekend. Notre Dame, a 3-seed in the Northeast Regional, will take on second-seeded Merrimack in New Hampshire tonight.

 

The Irish (23-13-5) finished the regular season ranked No. 8 in the nation despite a disappointing finish at the CCHA Tournament in Joe Louis Arena last weekend. Notre Dame gave up 10 goals in back-to-back losses to Miami and Michigan to finish in fourth place of the conference tournament and likely dropped to a three-seed in the national tournament because of it.

They will take on Merrimack College tonight from North Andover, Mass. The Warriors (25-9-4) made a statement during the highly-contested Hockey East tournament by knocking off UNH and Maine before losing to Boston College in the championship game.

Boston College was the first major upset of the tournament last night. The Eagles — a 1-seed in the West bracket — gave up 8 goals to Colorado College and were eliminated with an 8-4 loss. Another traditional hockey powerhouse, Michigan, narrowly avoided being upset as well. The Wolverines trailed 2-0 early against Nebraska-Omaha before a controversial overtime goal moved them into the Elite Eight.

If Notre Dame wins tonight, they will take on the winner of the Miami-New Hampshire game also being played today. The RedHawks are the No. 1 seed in the region, but have to take on UNH less than 10 miles from the school’s campus.

Tonight’s Notre Dame game will be televised in New England and in South Bend. It is also available on ESPN3.com where you can catch almost all of the tournament games this weekend.

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