Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Elite 8 Predictions Week 11 (2/25-3/5)

I am going to stick to the 8 games per week. If you would like a "Twitter Pick" tweet @cthshockey and I'll send you a pick there!

RECORD: 47-22-5   LAST WEEK: 3-3-1

Elite Predictions: Mark these on the calendar

2/25 Eastern CT Eagles @ WMR 4:40 @ Newington Ice Arena
It's been a rough year for the WMR co-op, Wethersfield's first year as a co-op. They are 0-15 and their post season hopes look dim, while not impossible. Tonight they face the Eastern CT Eagles. The Eagles haven't scored a goal in three games coming in and seem to be the type of opponent that WMR needs to break through. I think they do. While it's hard to have impressive point totals on a winless team, seniors Anthony Portonova, Nick Hock, Tyler Garcia and Ryan Wolfer have done what they can this year up against tough odds. It would be nice to see these guys go out with at least a win, tonight's their best shot. WMR 4, ECE 3

2/25 Xavier @ ND Fairfield 6:00 @ Milford Ice Pavilion
NDF's Mark Russo in a recent game vs. Greenwich
I'll be at this one. It's a monster tilt. Both teams have been electric of late. NDF has won 6 of 7 while Xavier hasn't lost in 9 (6-0-3). Both teams play a fast, hard hitting style and get scoring contributions from up and down the roster. While goaltending earlier this year was a large question mark with both of these teams Ben Guidobono and Billy Scovill have erased any of those worries with their play of late. I hate picking against Xavier when they've done just about everything right recently. I think I'll just go with the home team in this one as a cop out. Should be a fantastic game. NDF 3, Xavier 2

2/25 Branford @ Glastonbury 7:30 @ Trinity College
Branford is in the midst of an uncharacteristic two game losing streak. Glastonbury comes into play off a loss to Xavier in OT but many of their wins recently have come in OT or were close affairs. This one sets up to be pretty close. Glastonbury is certainly the deeper team, running three solid D1 lines. Branford has top line power but falls off offensively after that. However, the Hornets D-core has been a staple all year and this game features two of the state's best goalies regardless of division in AJ Brink and Kyle Thibodeaux. I think the Tomahawks' depth could be the difference in this one, but wouldn't be surprised in the least bit if Brink's boys found a way to win. Glastonbury 2, Branford 1

2/25 Housatonic-NW-Wam @ Masuk 7:45 @ The Rinks
Housy battles with everyone and this will be no different tonight at the Rinks. The big difference tonight is that Masuk, right now, is the toast of D3. Housy is in the midst of a tough D3 stretch, coming off a tie against Tri-Town, Masuk tonight, followed by NFI and Shepaug. This stretch will tell us a lot about Housy. Masuk is 5-0-1 since losing in OT to Branford. I think this one will be close, or else I wouldn't have selected it as an E8P but Masuk should win. Masuk 5, Housy 3

2/28 Fairfield Prep @ Hamden 2:30 @ Lou Astorino Rink
Senior day at the Lou and a likely opponent in Fairfield Prep. The Jesuits have ruined the last three senior days for Hamden and look to do the same again this Saturday. The Dragons are hurting, after a 7-1-1 start they've lost 8 of 9. Luckily, the Dragons have a chance to break this string of ineptitude Wednesday against NDWH on their senior night. Prep has been hard to read of late, getting shut out by Wade Conlan and NDWH last time out. But prior to that they ran off back to back 3-1 wins over Catholic Memorial (MA) and Ridgefield. I think Prep is the more tournament ready team right now but I don't have a ton of confidence in either squad right now. The good thing about rivalry games, though, is that can all change with one win. Prep 4, Hamden 2

2/28 EO Smith-Tolland @ Newington-Berlin 7:20 @ Newington Ice Arena
I'll be checking out this evenly matched D3/D2 tilt Saturday night. The Bucks were able to beat New-Ber 3-2 in OT back on 1/14. The Indians are 8-1 since that loss with their only loss coming to D2 #1 Conard. The Bucks are also 8-1 since that night with their lone loss coming against D2 up and comer Fermi-Enfield. I think both teams' schedules have been light this year and EO will have their hands full with Tri-Town tonight. I think New-Ber won't allow themselves to lose to the Bucks twice in one year and I think they're slightly deeper than the D3 powerhouse. New-Ber 4, Bucks 3

2/28 North Branford @ North Haven 7:30 @ Northford Ice Pavilion
This will be a great D2 NIP roommate clash. North Haven is 6-1-1 over their last 8 which includes a 2-1 win over North Branford. The T-Birds haven't been the electric power they were earlier this year and losing to East Haven last time out shouldn't sit well with the boys in the locker room. Like New-Ber and the Bucks, I find it hard to believe that North Haven will sweep the season series between these two evenly matched squads. I hesitantly pick North Branford to even the score. NB 3, NH 1

3/4 Suffield-Granby-WL @ Conard 7:30 @ Veteran's Ice Rink
D2 Game of the Week won't happen till next week. As of now Conard is my D2 #1 and SGWL is my D2 #2. Conard won the first meeting 2-1 back on 1/21. Conard has won 8 of 9 including 4 against D1 opponents. The Wildcats started off quite mediocre, sitting at 5-4 through nine games. Since then, they've run off 7 straight wins beating Branford, Simsbury and Cheshire in the process. This one is as hard as any to predict. SGWL will be coming in after games against East Catholic and Tri-Town while Conard will have played NWC, Hall and SW. Neither team will be rested. I'm flipping a coin (not really). Conard 4, SGWL 3

The Conard Chieftains have celebrated many a win this season.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Bracketology (2/22)

Even though the formula is rather easy to figure out with 16 teams making the tournament at each division, I thought I'd release, every Sunday, the state tournament matchups for each division if the season ended today according to the CIAC's current rankings. This changes with each win, loss and tie but I will weekly post it for those inquiring minds. Also not factored into this equation are teams that are either disqualified or close to being disqualified due to excessive majors. It appears as of now that only Trinity Catholic is deemed ineligible for the tournament due to excessive majors. However, it has been reported that there is another team with seven. Enjoy!

DIVISION 1
Darien made a big jump this week moving from #5 to #2, Hamden continues to fall. The top 8 are separated from the bottom 8 by 11 points, some pretty clear division among the ranks, only in terms of points, not necessarily talent. 

16) South Windsor (2-14, 15 points) @ 1) Greenwich (16-1-2, 105 points)
9) Simsbury (10-8, 67 points) @ 8) ND West Haven (8-6-5, 78 points)

12) New Canaan (10-6-3, 61 points) @ 5) Ridgefield (14-5, 84 points)
13) West Haven (8-8-1, 59 points) @ 4) Glastonbury (12-3-1, 86 points)

11) East Catholic (9-6, 66 points) @ 6) Fairfield Prep (9-8, 81 points)
14) Northwest Catholic (8-10, 57 points) @ 3) ND Fairfield (10-8, 87 points)

10) Hamden (8-9-1, 67 points) @ 7) Xavier (8-5-3, 81 points)
15) St. Joseph (9-7-1, 39 points) @ 2) Darien (15-2-1, 102 points)

Best Matchup- (10) Hamden @ (7) Xavier- The two teams played to an OT Hamden win the first time out. They have gone in complete opposite directions since then, but Hamden has the skill players able to compete with Xavier. Xavier is probably the more athletic, quicker team and if it was played right now I would side with the Falcons. However, Hamden could be a different team come tourney time.

Upset Alert- (13) West Haven @ (4) Glastonbury- Not saying this would happen. The whole state knows I believe in Thibodeaux, but this is a game that would come down to just that, the goaltending. Mike Savino has the ability to be the best goalie in the state. Neither one of these teams will blow your mind when it comes to offense, but the Westies as a 13 seed are scary.

Yawner- (15) St. Joseph @ (2) Darien- Not a knock on St. Joe's but Darien is scary good right now. Massie has been fantastic in net, Pardue and co. could be the best line in the state and St. Joe's is 0-7-1 vs. D1 teams this season.

DIVISION 2
Top 5 teams stay seeded the same this week while North Haven jumps from #11 to #8. Hand would be eligible if the tourney started now, while WP dropped out.

16) BCR (6-11, 16 points, .353) @ 1) Conard (11-4, 70 points, .733)
9) Fermi-Enfield (11-7, 40 points, .611) @ 8) North Haven (8-6-2, 41 points, .562)

12) Wilton (7-10, 27 points, .412) @ 5) SGWL (12-4, 56 points, .750)
13) Guilford (7-10, 26 points, .412) @ 4) Newington-Berlin (13-5, 56 points, .722)

11) Milford (8-8, 35 points .500) @ 6) Fairfield (12-6, 49 points, .667)
14) Daniel Hand (4-8-1, 25 points, .346) @ 3) North Branford (12-4, 57 points, .750)

10) Cheshire (7-8-1, 37 points, .469) @ 7) New Milford (10-4-2, 48 points, .688)
15) Trumbull (6-12, 21 points, .333) @ 2) Branford (13-3, 63 points, .812)

Best Matchup- (11) Milford @ (6) Fairfield- These two just played. Fairfield won 1-0. They are evenly matched and this would be a great first round matchup. I think the Mustangs are the better team. Jake Fuss is legit and their goaltending has been solid all year, but the matchup is fantastic.

Upset Alert- (10) Cheshire @ (7) New Milford- Tough one to call here too. These teams skated to a 2-2 tie earlier this year and the Wave were able to beat the Rams 4-3 more recently. Because of how close those games were, that's my justification for putting NM on upset alert. It's not because I think Cheshire is the better team, I think it's a toss up. I just think out of all the first round matchups this has the best chance for an upset.

Yawner- (1) Conard vs. (16) BCR- Same as last week. BCR is just not in the same league as Conard. They let up too many goals. In games against current D2 qualifiers BCR has been outscored 32-6.

OUTSIDE LOOKING IN:
17) Amity (4-13-1, 22 points, .250)
18) East Haven (4-13, 17 points, .235)
19) Watertown-Pomperaug (5-12, 15, .294)
20) Trinity Catholic (4-14, 14 points, .222)
21) Farmington Valley (2-12, 4 points, .143)

DIVISION 3
The 8 home teams, if the tourney started today, remain the same with the only change being Staples moving up to #4 and Westhill dropping a spot to #5. Barlow moves from #11 to #9 while a few other lower seeds shift one spot. The 16 teams from last week remain in tact.

16) Lyman Hall-HK-Cog (4-12, 8 points, .250) @ 1) Masuk (14-2-1, 48 points, .853)
9) Joel Barlow (9-8, 24 points, .529) @ 8) Tri-Town (8-7-1, 25 points, .531)

12) Shepaug (9-7, 22 points, .562) @ 5) Westhill (9-7-1, 34 points, .559)
13) BBD (6-10, 27 points, .375) @ 4) Staples-Weston-Shelton (11-8, 34 points, .579) 

11) Woodstock (9-7, 23 points, .562) @ 6) Housy-NW-Wam (10-4-2, 27 points, .688)
14) Hall-Southington (5-13, 15 points, .278) @ 3) NFI (12-6, 36 points, .667)

10) Redhawks (8-8, 24 points, .500) @ 7) Sheehan (9-5, 26 points, .643)
15) Eastern CT Eagles (4-12, 13 points, .250) @ 2) EO Smith-Toll (14-2, 44 points, .875)

Best Matchup- (9) Barlow @ (8) Tri-Town- These two haven't met this year but this would be an even pairing. Barlow seems to have more jump off the page players, but their depth is a big question mark. Tri-Town is a deeper team and could wear down JB. This one is a toss up which you love to see out of your 8/9 matchups.

Upset Alert- (12) Shepaug @ (5) Westhill- This seems very counter to what I've been saying all year about Westhill, a disciplined FCIAC team that just seems to always play well. However, they are just 2-2 against current D3 qualifiers and were exposed slightly in a 5-2 loss to Staples recently. This selection as an upset alert is more focuses on Shepaug's improved play of late. They've won 7 straight, 6 of those 7 coming against current D3 qualifiers. I would probably still pick Westhill if they played right now, but it's not a no brainer the way it was earlier this year.

Yawner- (15) Eagles @ (2) Bucks- EO has a way of dismantling weaker opponents. It's their play against comparable opponents that worries me, but that's a discussion for another time. The Eagles would be infinitely overmatched in this one. 

OUTSIDE LOOKING IN:
17) Newtown (3-14, 10 points, .176)
18) Stamford (3-16, 6 points, .158)
19) Norwalk-McMahon (1-17-1, 4 points, .079)
20) WMR (0-15, 0 points, .000)

----------------------------------------------------------------------
*Clarification on divisions where fewer than 16 teams meet the 40% qualifying standard*


  1. In a division where fewer than 16 teams meet the 40% qualifying standard, a full bracket of 16 teams will be achieved by qualifying teams with next highest winning percentages. If ties exist when comparing winning percentages, the remaining spots in the 16 team bracket will be filled using the tie-breaker procedure, where the first tie-breaker will be power points. Should teams be tied by power points, the tie- breaker system already in place will be followed

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Elite 8 Predictions Week 10 (2/18-2/24)

I am going to stick to the 8 games per week. If you would like a "Twitter Pick" tweet @cthshockey and I'll send you a pick there!

RECORD: 44-19-4   LAST WEEK: 4-4

Elite Predictions: Mark these on the calendar

2/18 Notre Dame-Fairfield @ Darien 6:00 @ Darien Ice Rink
Maybe I should stay away from this one for NDF's sake. The Lancers have completely turned their season around since losing to Greenwich back on 1/28, a game I attended. They've run off six straight and seemed to have sharpened up their play on the defensive end of the ice allowing only 3 goals against their last four games. Darien couldn't be hotter as well. They are 8-0-1 since losing to Ridgefield. While Prep has really been the only real quality opponent out of the whole lot, going 9 games without a loss is eye opening. Both teams get contributions from up and down the lineup and NDF has certainly benefited from getting some players back from transfer rule ineligibility. I'm going to go with Darien with great hesitation. I have enjoyed being a bystander with NDF's recent resurgence but I'm also a believer a team needs to come down from a high in order to achieve an ultimate goal. This seems like a bump in the road game for an NDF squad that is going to go far in March. That said, take nothing away from this Darien group headed by a top line that's combined for over 75 points this year featuring Jack Pardue, Craig Miller and Jake Kirby. Darien in a toss up. Wave 3-2
 
2/18 Fairfield Co-op @ Branford 6:00 @ Northford Ice Pavilion
A nice little D2 tilt here featuring a dominant power looking to rebound from a loss and an up and coming, under the radar group looking to notch another big win. Branford is coming off a loss to Suffield-Granby-WL, only their second of the year. Fairfield just went toe to toe with #1 Greenwich, losing 2-1 their last time out. This one is even, as much as I want to say Branford is the superior team, and they probably are on paper, this should be a close game. This game pits two potential D2 Player of the Year candidates in Branford's Tyler Criscuolo and Fairfield's Jake Fuss. As far as a prediction, I'm going to go with a bounce back win for Branford. Like the Darien/NDF game, I could see this going either way but, at least at this point, Branford is too good of a team to lose back to backs. Branford 4-3
 
2/18 North Haven @ Masuk 7:30 @ The Rinks at Shelton
D3 #1 vs. competitive D2 squad. North Haven needed an OT goal to top Watertown-Pomperaug last time out. Masuk is has won 10 of 11 with their only loss coming to D2 power Branford. They are more than a strong D3 team, they are a team that could compete with some of D2's best, including a team like North Haven, that has gotten strong goaltending from Graziano, but at times is limited in their scoring potential. These should feed into Masuk's strength, getting a lead, building a lead and holding a lead. I don't know if it's an upset for not, but I'm calling for Masuk to win this game. Panthers 4-3
 
2/21 Notre Dame-West Haven @ Fairfield Prep 1:00 @ Wonderland of Ice
As good of a rivalry as any, Prep and NDWH is always a good time out at the rink. Prep beat NDWH 7-2 earlier this is in a game that initially was much closer than the final tally. Prep is 8-3-1 vs. NDWH over the last five seasons and comes in feeling good about a win over Ridgefield. But this is not the Jesuits we've come to know and, for many, despise. This group has struggled in state, losing to Darien (twice), Xavier, and NDF. Normally, the Jesuits struggles, if any, have come against traditional New England, out of state powers. To sum up, Prep is mortal this year. Still, they are feared. NDWH, more than probably any other team would love to take them down. They are lead by Joe Ansaldo and a cast of under the radar, hard working skaters. While it's likely we'll see Prep's Jack Taubl in net, Coach Tim Belcher has had quite the platoon situation going on in the NDWH crease with Wade Conlan and Conor Hylton. At the end of the day, Prep at Wonderland is too scary to pick against, especially when it seems that they are growing more hungry by the day. Prep 5-3
 
2/21 Woodstock Academy @ Joel Barlow 2:00 @ Danbury Ice Arena
These are two teams desperately fighting for home ice and a possible 6-8 seed in the D3 state tournament this year. It would be a feat for either team so this game takes on special significance. Woodstock has lost 3 of 5 coming in but has still achieved some great things in only their second year as a varsity program. They rely heavily on sophomores Ryan Black and Nathan Deluca. The pair accounts for more than half of the team's points on the year (54/101). In net, the Centaurs have utilized a two headed monster system with great success. Both junior Tucker Johns and sophomore Cal WIlcox have shown that they can hang this year. Barlow will come in off a battle with Shepaug, a team with the chops to beat able to take them down. Barlow is still sitting over .500 at 8-7 but still hasn't logged that big in state win. They are lead by one of the strongest all around players at the D3 level, sophomore Billy Berry (33 points). He is anchored by his older brother Charlie Berry (28 points) and fellow sophomore sensation Kyle Converse (29 points). The Falcons, too, have used two goalies this year, though junior Connor Jones has seen the bulk of the action. I think Barlow is able to finally get that win over a state tournament quality team. Their fire power is elite and if they can key Woodstock's bread and butter, they should emerge victorious. Barlow 4-2
 
2/21 Ridgefield @ Hamden 2:30 @ Lou Astorino Rink
Man, has Hamden been struggling. After a 7-1-1 start, Hamden has gone 1-5 with the lone win coming against East Haven. Now, heading into this Saturday tilt Hamden will be coming off games against Malden Catholic (MA's #2) and either Springfield Cathedral (MA's #1) or St. Mary's (MA). So, a win against any of those teams can do wonders for confidence. But that's a tall task. Ridgefield hasn't been as electric of late as they were earlier this year and they'll be coming off a tough Wednesday night game against NDWH. The Tigers are coming off a 2-2 stretch with losses to Prep and Greenwich. I think if I was to pick today I would pick the Tigers and because I don't have a fortune teller at my disposal, I'll have to stick with that. That said, if RIdgefield continues to struggle against NDWH and Hamden can notch a win in Mass, I would lean more toward the Dragons. Even if that happens, however, I'm sticking with my original pick. Ridgefield 5-3
 
2/21 Suffield-Granby-WL @ Northwest Catholic 7:25 @ ISCC
Suffield-Granby-WL is red hot and are finally playing the way many people predicted they would at the beginning of the year. Jake King is making his senior year memorable with 27 points though 16 games. Senior Shane Kertanis is also playing at an elite level in net and there are plenty of complementary scorers on this group able to take charge any night. This is a team that has what it takes to beat a mid tier D1 team like NWC, now. They didn't a few weeks ago and they lost to the Indians 4-1 at the Twin. I think this time around will be closer. Since then, NWC is 1-3 with their lone win coming in a 2-0 victory over Milford. I'm calling for the Wildcat upset. I have picked NWC on many occasion over the past few years and have been burned by them, so they'll likely win and continue that trend. Like most of my picks, this game could easily go either way. But I'll go with the D2 co-op. SGWL 3-2
 
2/23 Westhill @ New Milford 8:00 @ Canterbury Rink
Westhill is everyone's sleeper at the D3 level this year. They play almost everyone competitively and play a very sound system. New Milford isn't the power they were to start the year. With recent losses to Wilton and BBD, the Wave isn't exactly crashing with crisp consistency. But all is certainly not lost from this 10-4-2 team. They still have set themselves up nicely for the tourney but have to be very careful not to overlook this Vikings group. I think NM will do enough to avoid a third upset loss this year. Wave 5-3

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Bracketology (2/15/15)

Even though the formula is rather easy to figure out with 16 teams making the tournament at each division, I thought I'd release, every Sunday, the state tournament matchups for each division if the season ended today according to the CIAC's current rankings. This changes with each win, loss and tie but I will weekly post it for those inquiring minds. Also not factored into this equation are teams that are either disqualified or close to being disqualified due to excessive majors. However, I will do my best to keep you all updated on that front as well. After yesterday's fracas between St. Joseph and Trinity Catholic both of those teams could be in hot water if their count was high. Conflicting reports have ejection totals ranging from 4-8 total. If I am correct, an ejection is a DQ and would count against your state total. Again, much of this is speculative and Trinity Catholic had an uphill climb to become eligible at D2 based on performance but a SJ disqualification would certainly shake up a tidy D1 bracket. At last count, three teams were at five majors. The only confirmed team that I have is Shepaug, who has been playing great, clean hockey of late.  Enjoy!

DIVISION 1
16) South Windsor (1-13, 6 points) @ 1) Greenwich (14-1-2, 93 points)
9) Xavier (6-5-2, 60 points) @ 8) Simsbury (9-7, 61 points)

12) East Catholic (8-6, 57 points) @ 5) Darien (12-2-1, 75 points)
13) Northwest Catholic (8-9, 57 points) @ 4) Ridgefield (13-4, 75 points)

11) West Haven (8-6-1, 59 points) @ 6) Fairfield Prep (8-7, 72 points)
14) New Canaan (9-4-3, 52 points) @ 3) Glastonbury (11-3-1, 77 points)

10) ND West Haven (6-6-2, 60 points) @ 7) Hamden (8-6-1, 67 points)
15) St. Joseph (9-5-1, 39 points) @ 2) ND Fairfield (9-7, 78 points)

Best Matchup- (3) Glastonbury vs. (14) New Canaan- Normally a 3/14 wouldn't be as competitive as this game would be. NC has a fine wins/loss but many of those wins have come against lower division opponents. Recently though, the Rams play has improved. Glastonbury has been strong all year but would have their hands full with this quality FCIAC opponent.

Upset Alert- (7) Hamden vs. (10) NDWH- Hamden hasn't beaten the Knights in forever and lost to them 4-2 a few weeks back. The two face off again on Feb. 25 and the rivalry still has a bit of a buzz to it. NDWH isn't as strong as they've been in years past so I'd say no time is better for Hamden to break the losing streak against the Knights, but the Dragons have been struggling of late. Either way, this is the type of matchup you love to see come tournament time.

Yawner- (2) ND Fairfield vs. (15) St. Joseph- ND Fairfield handled the Cadets earlier this year when they were a much weaker team than they are now. St. Joe's has gone in the other direction, losing their freshmen netminder Ryan Wilson to injury and now has some serious suspension troubles. In fact, if they get four players suspended, including senior goalie Dylan Batterson, I'm not sure how they field a team tomorrow against Darien. So all that being said, I think NDF would cruise in this one now that they are fully stocked.

DIVISION 2
16) BCR (5-9, 13 points, .357) @ 1) Conard (10-4, 64 points, .714)
9) Milford (8-6, 33 points, .571) @ 8) Cheshire (7-7-1, 37 points, .500)

12) Wilton (6-8, 25 points, .429) @ 5) SGWL (10-4, 48 points, .714)
13) Trumbull (6-11, 21 points, .353) @ 4) Newington-Berlin (12-4, 55 points, .750)

11) North Haven (6-6-1, 28 points .500) @ 6) New Milford (9-4-2, 40 points, .667)
14) Guilford (5-8, 18 points, .385) @ 3) North Branford (12-4, 55 points, .750)

10) Fermi-Enfield (8-7, 28 points, .533) @ 7) Fairfield (10-5, 37 points, .667)
15) Watertown-Pomperaug (5-9, 15 points, .357) @ 2) Branford (13-2, 61 points, .867)

Best Matchup- (8) Cheshire vs. (9) Milford)- Milford won their matchup this year 5-3. This is a what you look for in a 8/9 matchup. As evenly matched as can be. Milford really turned their season around after struggling out of the gate. Cheshire has battled with everyone and recently narrowly lost to top dog Branford 4-3. This would be a battle.

Upset Alert- (6) New Milford vs. (11) North Haven- Honestly, I think I would pick all home teams if these games were to be played now and I don't consider a 9 beating an 8 an upset, so I turn to this one. North Haven is a good hockey team who plays as hard of a D2 schedule as anyone. New Milford has already had some head scratchers this year like losing to Wilton and BBD. If that team shows up, the Indians could prosper.

Yawner- (1) Conard vs. (16) BCR- BCR is 1-5 vs. D2 opponents this year with their lone win coming against D2's worst Farmington Valley. Conard, who ironically enough, missed out on last year's tournament would cruise in this one. But the same could be said for many other D2 high seeds vs. low seeds this year. D2 has had 13 seeds win back to back state titles, but D2 just doesn't seem that deep this year to see something like that happen again.

OUTSIDE LOOKING IN:
17) Daniel Hand (3-8-1, 19 points .292)
18) Amity (3-12-1, 14 points, .219)
19) Trinity Catholic (3-12, 12 points, .200)
20) East Haven (3-12, 11 points, .200)
21) Farmington Valley (2-11, 4 points, .154)

DIVISION 3
16) Lyman Hall-HK-Cog (4-10, 8 points, .286) @ 1) Masuk (12-2, 39 points, .857)
9) Redhawks (7-7, 22 points, .500) @ 8) Tri-Town (8-7, 24 points, .533)

12) Shepaug (7-7, 17 points, .500) @ 5) Staples-Weston-Shelton (8-8, 25 points, .500) 
13) BBD (5-9, 24 points, .357) @ 4) Westhill (7-6-1, 28 points, .536)

11) Joel Barlow (8-6, 21 points, .571) @ 6) Housy-NW-Wamogo (9-4-1, 24 points, .679)
14) Eastern CT Eagles (4-10, 13 points, .286) @ 3) NFI (11-6, 32 points, .647)

10) Woodstock Academy (8-5, 21 points, .615) @ 7) Sheehan (8-4, 24 points, .667)
15) Hall-Southington (4-11, 13 points, .267) @ 2) EO Smith-Toll (11-2, 35 points, .846)

Best Matchup- (6) Housy vs. (11) Barlow- These two just met with Housy winning in OT. They are a very evenly matched team with some underrated star power in players like Jason Diamond, James Huften, Wes Reel, Finn Bamberry, Billy Berry, Kyle Converse and Charlie Berry. This one would be fun to watch and could go either way. 

Upset Alert- (7) Sheehan vs. (10) Woodstock- The Centaurs play everybody pretty tough and while I think Sheehan is the better team on paper, the Titans are fighting it bad right now. Luckily for them the tournament doesn't start today. If it did, I might be picking Woodstock. As it is, this would be a good matchup and we get a preview when these teams play next Monday.

Yawner- (3) NFI vs. (14) Eastern CT Eagles- Let's be real, the Eagles are only in this position because of a 3-1 start to the year and a recent win over Everett (MA). With that win they are 1-9 since their great start. NFI is a far superior opponent and this one would get ugly fast.

OUTSIDE LOOKING IN:
17) Newtown (3-11, 10 points, .214)
18) Stamford (3-14, 6 points, .176)
19) Norwalk-McMahon (1-15-1, 4 points, .088)
20) WMR (0-14, 0 points, .000)

*Clarification on divisions where fewer than 16 teams meet the 40% qualifying standard*

  1. In a division where fewer than 16 teams meet the 40% qualifying standard, a full bracket of 16 teams will be achieved by qualifying teams with next highest winning percentages. If ties exist when comparing winning percentages, the remaining spots in the 16 team bracket will be filled using the tie-breaker procedure, where the first tie-breaker will be power points. Should teams be tied by power points, the tie- breaker system already in place will be followed