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WAKEFIELD, Mass. -- The Hockey East Association has announced the field for the upcoming 24th annual Hockey East Tournament, which begins on Friday, March 14 on the campus sites of the top four seeded teams. All series begin on Friday and are best of three series in the quarterfinal round of the playoffs. All quarterfinal games will begin at 7 p.m., except for the NESN game on Friday night, which begins at 7:30 p.m.
No. 1 seed New Hampshire (23-8-3, 19-5-3 HEA) will host No. 8 Massachusetts (14-14-6, 9-13-5 HEA) at the Whittemore Center in Durham, N.H., in a rematch of one of the semifinal matchups from last year. The Wildcats won the season series, 2-1-0 this year.
No. 2 Boston University (17-15-4, 15-9-3 HEA) faces off against No. 7 seed UMass-Lowell (15-15-4, 10-13-4 HEA) at Agganis Arena in Boston. The game will be televised live on NESN with a special 7:30 puck drop. The Terriers took the season series from the River Hawks, 2-1-0.
No. 3 Vermont (14-13-7, 13-9-5 HEA) will entertain No. 6 Northeastern (15-16-3, 12-13-2 HEA) at Gutterson Fieldhouse in Burlington, Vt. It marks the first time since the Catamounts joined the league in 2005-2006 that they have hosted a quarterfinal playoff series. The Saturday night game will broadcast live by Comcast (CN8). UVM and NU tied the season match up at 1-1-1.
No. 4 Boston College (17-11-8, 11-9-7 HEA) opens the playoffs with No. 5 Providence College (14-15-5, 11-11-5 HEA) in Chestnut Hill, Mass. at Conte Forum. The Friars earned the season series win against BC with three points in the second to last weekend with a 2-0-1 head-to-head record.
Hockey East Tournament games will be available for viewing by a worldwide audience through B2 Networks and will be aired through www.hockeyeastonline. com as well as www.b2tv.com. Fans wanting to watch hockey games via B2 Networks will need a high-speed Internet connection and a current version of Microsoft Windows Media Player. Games will be sold on an individual basis for $8 (US). The Hockey East Tournament pass for viewing all games broadcast by B2 Networks will be $40, which includes ever game except the Friday night NESN game (BU/UML).
The winners of each quarterfinal series will advance to the TD Banknorth Garden in Boston for the 24th annual Hockey East Championships on Friday, March 21 and Saturday, March 22. The semifinals will be played Friday at 5 and 8 p.m. and the title game will be played on Saturday night at 7 p.m. in Boston.
The Hockey East Association is a 10-team, Division-I college hockey conference, with offices based in Wakefield, Mass. Founded in 1983, the league has won four NCAA championships in the past 13 years. The conference also sponsors an eight-team women’s league which began play in 2002-03.