UNH (28-4-5 overall, 18-1-2 Hockey East) garnered six first-place votes and a total of 55 points to edge out Boston College (51 points; two first-place votes), last year’s regular-season runner-up.
The University of Connecticut, which finished fifth in the 2007 standings, placed third in the ’08 poll with 41 points. UConn was followed by Boston University (38 points), Providence College (35), Northeastern University (24), University of Vermont (20) and University of Maine (16).
UNH returns 16 letterwinners, including 2007 Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award Top 10 Finalist Martine Garland (Toronto, Ontario). The senior defenseman and 2008 captain also garnered 2006 All-America honors, as did senior forwards Jennifer Hitchcock (LaSalle, Ontario) and Sadie Wright-Ward (Durham, N.H.).
New Hampshire opens the 2008 season Oct. 5-6 for a two-game series at St. Lawrence University. The Wildcats’ home opener at the Whittemore Center is Oct. 14 (1 p.m.) against Colgate University. Tickets for all home games are available online (www.unhwildcats.com) or by calling 1-866-WILDCAT; home games will also be video- streamed online at UNHwildcats.tv.