Though the Gophers lost in the semifinals of the WCHA tournament, coach Brad Frost believes his team still came away with something valuable. The Gophers gained a good dose of confidence despite falling to Wisconsin in overtime, Frost said, a quality they will need when they begin the NCAA women's hockey tournament Saturday at Clarkson.

The Gophers (27-9-2, 19-7-2-3 WCHA) received the No. 5 seed in the 11-team tournament when the bracket was announced Sunday. They will play No. 4 seed Clarkson (32-4-2, 18-3-1 ECAC) at 2 p.m. Saturday at Cheel Arena, the Golden Knights' home rink in Potsdam, N.Y. The winner will advance to the Frozen Four March 22-24 in Durham, N.H.

The WCHA claimed the tournament's top two seeds, with regular-season champion Ohio State at No. 1 and WCHA tournament champ Wisconsin at No. 2. Colgate, the ECAC regular-season and tournament winner, is the No. 3 seed. The top three teams will play the winners of Thursday's first-round games.

Minnesota Duluth also received an at-large bid and will face Connecticut in a first-round game Thursday at OSU Ice Rink in Columbus, Ohio. The winner of that game will play Ohio State on Saturday for a berth in the Frozen Four.

After Wisconsin beat the Gophers 4-3 in the WCHA semifinals, the Badgers bested top-ranked Ohio State 6-3 in Saturday's title game. The Gophers went 1-7 against those two teams in the regular season, but Frost said the semifinal loss gave the Gophers a boost.

"Those are the top two teams in the country, and we can play with them," Frost said. "We know that.

"Our team has played very, very well in our last three games. We're playing the right way. We're giving ourselves an opportunity to win. I think the confidence is high for our group."

Clarkson was shut out 3-0 by Colgate in Saturday's ECAC tournament title game. The Knights were runners-up to Colgate in the league's regular-season standings and had won seven in a row before Saturday's loss.

Clarkson features the nation's best defense, led by ECAC Goaltender of the Year Michelle Pasiechnyk. The Knights give up 1.18 goals per game, and Pasiechnyk's eight shutouts are tied for most in the nation.

NCAA tournament schedule

First round, Thursday

Minnesota Duluth (20-13-4) vs. Connecticut (25-7-5), 6 p.m., Columbus, Ohio

Cornell (24-7-1) vs. Stonehill (21-15-2), 6 p.m., Hamilton, N.Y.

St. Lawrence (27-10) vs. Penn State (22-12-3), 7 p.m., Madison, Wis.

Quarterfinals, Saturday

No. 5 Gophers (27-9-2) at No. 4 Clarkson (32-4-2), 2 p.m., Potsdam, N.Y.

UMD/UConn at No. 1 Ohio State (32-4), 3 p.m.

Cornell/Stonehill at No. 3 Colgate (31-6), 2 p.m.

St. Lawrence/Penn State at no. 2 Wisconsin (33-5), 2 p.m.

Frozen Four in Durham, N.C.

Semifinals: 3 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. March 22 (streamed on ESPN+)

Championship game: 3 p.m. March 24 (ESPNU)