Gophers Earn No. 1 Seed in NE Regional

- The University of Minnesota men's hockey team may have missed out on the NCAA tournament last year, but they're heading into this year's as a No. 1 seed.

Minnesota Duluth was the only other in-state team to make the 16-team field, receiving the No. 1 seed in the Fargo regional, where the University of North Dakota will also participate and act as host.

The Irish (21-11-5) are the number-four seed in the Northeast Regional in Manchester, New Hampshire, and will meet top seed Minnesota (23-11-3) at 3:30 p.m. EDT Saturday in a regional semifinal game. The Gophers secured the last No. 1 seed for a regional as the team was watching the scoreboard over the weekend after falling to Penn State in the opening round of the Big Ten Tournament on Friday.

This is year four for head coach Steve Rohlik as Ohio State head coach and the Buckeyes have shown steady improvement during his run with the team.

The Irish and Gophers most recently met on November 6-7, 2015, when Notre Dame hosted Minnesota for a weekend series.

This is the 37th NCAA Tournament berth for the Gophers which is ties them with the Michigan Wolverines for an NCAA record. Don Lucia's club will square off against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish (Lucia's alma mater) in the opening round of the tournament.

The Midwest and East regionals will begin on Friday with Regional Finals on Saturday, while the West and Northeast regionals will begin on Saturday with the Regional Finals on Sunday.

  • Larry Hoffman