Aug. 16, 2007
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Eight games against NCAA tournament teams, including four at soon-to-be-renovated Ingalls Rink, highlight the 2007-08 Yale women's ice hockey schedule. The Bulldogs, looking to make their seventh straight ECAC playoff appearance, open the regular season Oct. 26 at conference foe RPI. The home opener promises to be a big one, as Yale hosts archrival Harvard Nov. 16.
The Bulldogs' 29 regular season games include 22 conference matchups (home-and-home series vs. Brown, Clarkson, Colgate, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, Quinnipiac, RPI, St. Lawrence and Union) and seven non-conference games. Three ECAC teams -- Dartmouth, Harvard and St. Lawrence -- made the NCAA tournament last season, with the Saints advancing as far as the Frozen Four.
There should be plenty of Bulldog fans in the New Haven area when Harvard comes to Ingalls for the first home game Nov. 16 -- it's the night before the Yale football team hosts the Crimson in "The Game", and that contest regularly draws over 50,000 fans.
Yale's first non-ECAC game is Nov. 24 at Ingalls Rink against Boston College, a team that made it to the Frozen Four last season and was ranked No. 6 in the final USA Today/USA Hockey poll. The Bulldogs also travel to Providence, a team that was among those "also receiving votes" in the final poll, on Dec. 6.
After a 20-day break for exams and holidays the Bulldogs will defend their Nutmeg Classic championship. The tournament returns for its fourth season, and now has expanded to include a fourth team in addition to Yale and state rivals Quinnipiac and UConn. The Bulldogs face Niagara in the first game Dec. 29 at 3:00 at Quinnipiac's TD Banknorth Center. The consolation and championship games take place there Dec. 30.
Yale hosts Hockey East opponent Northeastern, head coach Hilary Witt's alma mater, at Ingalls Jan. 5. After a pair of ECAC games at Princeton and Quinnipiac, the non-league portion of the slate wraps up with a trip West to Mercyhurst (Jan. 18) and Niagara (Jan. 19). Mercyhurst was ranked No. 1 for much of last season, eventually ending in the No. 3 slot after bowing out in the first round of the NCAA tournament.
Yale's final 10 games are all against ECAC teams and will help determine the Bulldogs' post-season plans. The top eight teams in the 12-team conference make the playoffs, with the top four teams hosting best-of-three quarterfinal series Feb. 29 to Mar. 2. The top remaining seed then hosts the ECAC semifinals and championship the following weekend.
Eight teams from across the country then get selected for the NCAA tournament. Regionals are held at campus sites Mar. 14-16 and the Frozen Four is at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center in Minnesota Mar. 21 and 23.
The $23.5 million renovation of Ingalls Rink that was approved by the Yale Corporation in June is scheduled to begin once the 2007-08 season ends.
Yale returns 16 players and adds four newcomers to the roster for 2007-08. The team will have a preseason scrimmage at Princeton Oct. 13 and will host McGill in an exhibition game at Ingalls Oct. 21.
report by Sam Rubin '95 (email@example.com), Yale Sports Publicity