COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. – The University of New Hampshire men’s hockey team, which won back-to-back Hockey East regular season titles in 2007 and 2008, received 287 total points to rank seventh in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine Men’s College Hockey Preseason Poll that was released Monday.

Boston College received 27 of 34 first-place votes and a total of 490 points to claim the No. 1 national ranking. The Eagles were followed in the poll by the University of Michigan (432 points; four first-place votes), University of Notre Dame (376), University of North Dakota (371; 1), Colorado College (355; 2), University of Denver (299) and UNH.

UNH, which ended the 2008 season ranked at No. 6, advanced to NCAA postseason play for the seventh consecutive year in ‘08 and finished the season with a 25-10-3 overall record, including 19-5-3 in Hockey East.

The Wildcats battle No. 1 BC at home Feb. 20 and face off against the Eagles on the road Nov. 15 and Feb. 21. The ‘Cats also travel to ninth-ranked University of Minnesota (Nov. 7-8) and play league rival and 10th-ranked Boston University three times, including Oct. 19 and Jan. 24 at the Whittemore Center.

New Hampshire plays St. Francis Xavier in an Oct. 4 exhibition game at the Whittemore Center. The Wildcats open the 2008-09 season October 11 at home against 13th-ranked University of Wisconsin. Both games begin at 7p.m.

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