By Victor Fernandes Erie Times-News staff blogger
Staff writer Victor Fernandes has ice in his veins. Hockey – he plays it, coaches it and provides the region's best coverage of it.   Read more about this blog.
 Phone: 814-870-1716
Posted: March 14th, 2013
LAKERS WATCH: Mercyhurst men at Holy Cross (AHA quarterfinals)

No. 6 Mercyhurst (16-15-5) at No. 3 Holy Cross (19-12-3)
Today and Saturday, 7 p.m.; Sunday, 5 p.m.*
Where: Hart Center – Worcester, Mass.
On the air: (live stream), WMCE-FM/88.5 & (radio), (live statistics)
What to expect: Mercyhurst earned a spot in the Atlantic Hockey Association quarterfinals with a two-game sweep of 11th-seeded Army in the first round last weekend. … With those wins, the Lakers snapped an eight-game winless streak (0-5-3) and swept a series for the first time since winning two games at Sacred Heart Nov. 2-3. … They also won consecutive games for the first time since 8-1 victories against Army and Robert Morris Feb. 2-5. … The Lakers and Crusaders meet in the quarterfinals for the second straight season. Mercyhurst won in three games at Mercyhurst Ice Center to advance to the AHA’s final four in Rochester, N.Y., a season ago Fifth-year senior G Max Strang stopped 111-of-115 shots in that series. … The Lakers split two games with the Crusaders at MIC in the regular season, losing 2-1 Jan. 11 and winning 4-2 the following night, but lead the all-time series 27-12-5. … The Lakers are 15-5-1 all-time at Hart Center. … They have a 3-1 record against Holy Cross in AHA tournament play and a 4-1 overall playoff mark dating back to a 2000 meeting in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (which became the AHA in 2003). … Rick Gotkin became the 26th college coach to reach 450 career wins last weekend. … Junior Fs Daniel O’Donoghue and Kyle Just and sophomore F Zac Frischmon combined for four goals and 11 points last weekend. They were teamed on a line for the first time this season in those games. … Holy Cross earned a first-round bye with a third-place finish in the regular-season standings. … The Crusaders enter this series with a five-game unbeaten streak. … They need one win to record consecutive 20-win seasons for the first time in program history. … They have their best record through 34 games since posting a 23-9-2 mark in the 2005-06 season.
* Sunday’s game if necessary

Atlantic Hockey Association tournament schedule
Quarterfinals (best-of-3 series)

No. 6 Mercyhurst (16-15-5) at No. 3 Holy Cross (19-12-3), 7 p.m.*
No. 8 Rochester Institute of Technology (15-16-5) at No. 1 Niagara (21-8-5), 7:05 p.m.
No. 5 Robert Morris (20-12-4) at No. 4 Connecticut (17-13-4), 7:05 p.m.
No. 7 Canisius (15-18-5) at No. 2 Air Force (17-11-7), 9:05 p.m.
* Game 3 on Sunday (if necessary) would begin at 5 p.m.
Semifinals – March 22
at Blue Cross Arena – Rochester, N.Y.

Quarterfinal winners, TBA
Championship game – March 23
at Blue Cross Arena – Rochester, N.Y.

Semifinal winners, TBA
Note: Champion earns an automatic bid to the NCAA Division I tournament.

- Victor Fernandes

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