Preview

 

MSU Mankato vs. Rochester Tech

3 p.m. Saturday, Compton Family Ice Arena, South Bend, Ind.

TV/radio: ESPNU, 1420-AM (Mankato)

Minnesota State Mankato (29-7-3, 21-4-3 WCHA): Before coach Mike Hastings came to Mankato in 2012, the program had made it to the NCAA tournament only once in 16 seasons of Division I play. The Mavericks have earned a berth in each of their three years under Hastings, but they remain winless in the tournament. The nation’s top-ranked team enters the tournament on a five-game win streak. Senior F Matt Leitner leads the Mavericks in scoring with nine goals and 32 assists, and his 162 career points are second most in the Mavs’ D-I history. Junior G Stephon Williams is 25-5-3 and is second in the nation with a 1.64 goals-against average.

 

RIT (19-14-5, 14-9-5 Atlantic Hockey): The Tigers are making their second appearance in the NCAA tournament since moving to Division I in 2005. They won their berth by capturing the Atlantic Hockey tournament title. All three members of their top line are ranked among the nation’s top 12 scorers: senior Matt Garbowsky (fifth, 53 points), junior Josh Mitchell (sixth, 50 points) and senior Brad McGowan (12th, 45 points). Garbowsky is a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award. RIT is on a seven-game win streak, the longest current streak in Division I.

RACHEL BLOUNT