Despite suffering an early-season loss to Utica College, the Oswego State men’s ice hockey team became the No. 1 team in Division III hockey on Monday after the release of this week’s USCHO.com Men’s Division III Men’s Poll. The Lakers rebounded from the loss to Utica with conference victories over SUNY Geneseo, 4-2, and the College at Brockport, 7-1, at the Campus Center Ice Arena over the weekend. Oswego State currently sits atop the SUNYAC standings at 3-0-0 after defeating SUNY Cortland, 6-0, last Friday to open conference play. While the Lakers are the nation’s No. 1 team in the latest poll, it is in no way unanimous, as Oswego State received seven out of a possible 20 first place votes. At 5-1-0 overall, the Lakers garnered 276 points in the latest poll. Oswego State hosts Morrisville State College on Saturday, Nov. 12, at the Campus Center Ice Arena.
Norwich University, who has yet to play a regular season game this season, sits at No. 2, receiving six of the 20 first place votes. The Cadets have played in two exhibition games so far this year, losing at Dartmouth, 3-1, on Oct. 23 and defeating Trois-Rivieres, 3-0, on Oct. 30. St. Norbert College dropped to No. 3 after being the top-ranked team at the beginning of the year. St. Norbert dropped a conference game to Wisconsin-Stevens Point, 5-1, and tied Gustavus Adolphus, 2-2. The Green Knights received four first place votes. Adrian College (No. 4) and SUNY Plattsburgh (No. 5) round out the top five. Adrian received one first place vote and defeated Geneseo, 6-5, in overtime on the road. Plattsburgh received the final two first place votes, as it has won its first two conference games against Morrisville and SUNY Potsdam.
Castleton College moved up one spot to No. 6, while Utica made the biggest jump up the rankings. The Pioneers vaulted to No. 7 after sitting at No. 13 in the preseason poll. Bowdoin comes in at No. 8, and are the only other team in this week’s rankings that have yet to play a regular season game. Elmira College, sitting at 2-2-0 overall, dropped three spots to No. 9. The Soaring Eagles opened their season with back-to-back losses to the Lakers before rebounding with conference victories over Utica and Manhattanville. Neumann College rounds out the top 10, winning its only game so far this season against Curry College.
Milwaukee School of Engineering rose three spots to No. 11, jumping out to a fast 4-0-0 start to the season. Also at 4-0-0 is No. 12 Wisconsin-River Falls, who is one of two new teams to the poll this week. Wisconsin-River Falls has yet to play a conference game, but do have quality wins over St. Norbert and Hamline College. Wisconsin-Superior dropped four spots to No. 13 after dropping an overtime game to St. Olaf. Geneseo becomes the third SUNYAC team in the rankings, as the Ice Knights come in at No. 14. Wisconsin-Eau Claire rounds out the top 15 at 3-1-0 overall.
Other teams receiving votes include: Williams (20), Wisconsin-Stout (20), Marian (12), Gustavus Adolphus (11), Hamline (11), Amherst (10), Middlebury (10), Hobart (9), New England College (9), Curry (7), Concordia (Minn.) (5), Wesleyan (5), Fredonia (4), Wentworth (3), Suffolk (1).
USCHO.com Division III Men’s Ice Hockey Poll (first place votes)
1. Oswego State (7)
2. Norwich (6)
3. St. Norbert (4)
4. Adrian (1)
5. Plattsburgh (2)
11. Milwaukee School of Engineering
12. Wisconsin- River Falls
15. Wisconsin- Eau Claire