MANSFIELD, Mass. – The Saint Anselm College men's ice hockey team was selected as the second-ranked team in the Northeast-10 Conference Preseason Coaches' Poll on Friday. The 2018-19 season will be the 50th anniversary of the varsity inception of the men's ice hockey program.
LINK: NE10 Release
The reigning NE10 Conference Champions received a pair first-place votes and 21 total points, trailing preseason favorite Saint Michael's College by three points and two-place votes. Southern New Hampshire University and Assumption College were selected third and fourth, respectively. Franklin Pierce University and Stonehill College rounded out the poll tied for the fifth spot.
The Hawks concluded the 2017-18 season with an impressive 17-9-1 mark, the most wins in a single season through the last 10 years, while skating to an 11-4 league record. Saint Anselm defeated the Purple Knights by a score of 6-5 in overtime to capture its 10th NE10 Championship.
Head coach Larry Rocha '79 begins his first season at the helm of the program, becoming the eighth coach of the men's ice hockey team. He became the first alumnus to lead the squad since Tom Birmingham '76 piloted the program from 1979 to 1985. Prior to his appointment, Rocha served as the assistant coach since the start of the 2013-14 season.
Saint Anselm, which boasts a 31-game schedule, opens the season against the University of New England in an exhibition contest on Friday, Oct. 26 at home. The regular season kicks off against Babson College on Saturday, Oct. 27 at 4 p.m. at Sullivan Arena.
Northeast-10 Conference Ice Hockey Preseason Coaches' Poll (First-Place Votes)
1. Saint Michael's – 24 (4)
2. Saint Anselm – 21 (2)
3. So. New Hampshire – 17
4. Assumption – 12
5. Franklin Pierce/Stonehill - 8