Roman Augustoviz spends Minnesota's winters covering college hockey, specifically the Gophers, and other University of Minnesota sports. During the summer, he writes about the WNBA's Minnesota Lynx, with a dose of U sports sprinkled in. Follow him on Twitter @RomanStrib.

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The National is counting down to its first season

Posted by: Roman Augustoviz under College hockey, Men's hockey Updated: April 23, 2013 - 12:31 PM

In the heat of the college hockey playoffs, the new National Collegiate Hockey Conference  released  its 2013-14 composite schedule.

In case you missed it or didn't pay much attention to it, there is a link to it below.

Four NCHC teams -- Denver, Miami, North Dakota and St Cloud State -- were among the 16 teams in the NCAA tournament. The Huskies reached the Frozen Four in Pittsburgh.

The conference regular season will lead into the inaugural NCHC post season tournament, with all eight teams competing in the quarterfinals, March 14-16. The top four seeds will host the bottom four seeds in best-of-three series.

The winners of the quarterfinal series will advance to the Target Center for NCHC semifinals on March 21.

The two semifinal winners will meet in the NCHC Championship game while the losers will play for third place, on March 22. Semifinal and championship games will be televised nationally on CBS Sports Network.

The NCHC tournament champion will receive the conference automatic qualifier to the NCAA tournament.

"We are very excited to begin play in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference, as this begins a new chapter in Miami Hockey,” Miami coach Enrico Blasi said. “The CCHA produced many great memories and rivalries for us and I am confident the NCHC will do the same.

"We look forward to creating those rivalries and welcoming new teams to our building that our fans have not typically seen in the past. This league provides a very challenging schedule for us every weekend that will prepare our student-athletes for postseason play and give them new experiences."

Said Trev Alberts, AD for Nebraska Omaha: “The upcoming season brings almost the same anticipation as Omaha’s first season of conference play back in 1999-2000. As expected, we have a very challenging schedule in the NCHC, and our staff has worked very hard to put together an outstanding non-conference schedule to complement it."

St. Cloud State coach Bob Motzko, in his last weekly radio show, said during the WCHA season he did not talk much about the NCHC with other coaches: "It is like cheating on your wife ... Now it is over. It is still hard to talk about it ... I don't how to start.

But Motzko know what to expect. "At christmas, there will be eight teams that are 8-8," he said. "We are going to beat the tar out of each other. We all better get used to .500 records ... We have find ways to survive it to get into the NCAA tournament."

The eight NCHC teams are:

From the WCHA: Colorado College, Denver, Minnesota Duluth, Nebraska Omaha, North Dakota, St. Cloud State

From the CCHA: Miami and Western Michigan

For a composite Natonal Collegiate Hockey Conference schedule -- albeit without game times -- go here.

To go to the NCHC home page on the web, click here.

A look at the three or four games the Gophers will play against NCHC teams:

Nov. 22-23: UMD at Mariucci Arena

Jan. 24: vs. St. Cloud State in Minnesota Hockey Tournament (no official name yet) at Xcel Energy Center

 

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