No. 9 Mercyhurst University (26-6-1) vs. Robert Morris (15-14-13)
Syracuse (19-14-1) vs. Rochester Institute of Technology (16-15-5)
When: Today, 1:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.; Saturday, 3 p.m.
Where: Mercyhurst Ice Center
On the air: www.americaonesports.com (live stream), www.hurstathletics.com (live statistics)
What to expect: Mercyhurst begins its quest for a 10th College Hockey America tournament championship in the last 11 years with a healthy lineup. Junior F Christie Cicero (severe concussion, sprained neck) rejoined the lineup Feb. 23 against RIT. … The Lakers can capture their 12th conference title in the last 13 years, dating back to the 2000-01 season in the Great Lakes Women’s Hockey Association. … Win or lose, the Lakers learn if they will make a NCAA-record ninth straight NCAA Division I tournament appearance when the eight-team field is unveiled Sunday at 6 p.m. on NCAA.com. … Mercyhurst lost the first three regular-season meetings with defending CHA champion Robert Morris before posting a 9-1 home win Feb. 9. … The Lakers swept all four respective meetings with Syracuse and RIT. … Junior F Christine Bestland finished the regular season ranked fourth nationally with 40 assists, fifth with 66 points and ninth with 26 goals. She also tied for second with 10 power-play goals and tied for eighth with six game-winning goals. … Sophomore Ds Molly Byrne and and Vaila Higson were tied for fifth among all defensemen with 31 points apiece. … F Emily Janiga is third among all freshmen with 40 points, one spot ahead of F Jenna Dingeldein (39 points). … Senior G Stephanie Ciampa ranks second with a .944 winning percentage (17-1-0), fourth with a 1.40 goals-against average, tied for seventh with a .935 save percentage and tied for eighth with four shutouts. … RMU needed two wins last weekend over Lindenwood, including a three-overtime victory in the opener, to reach the semifinals. … RIT, which beat Penn State twice by one goal last weekend, looks for a CHA championship in its first season in the league and at the D-I level. … Syracuse reached the title game two of the last three years.
– Victor Fernandes