Opinion: Women's hockey slighted with NCAA berth

Ethan Magoc photo: The Lakers look to reach their third straight Frozen FourEthan Magoc photo: The Lakers are pursuing their third-consecutive Frozen Four.The Mercyhurst College women’s hockey team is fresh off its ninth straight College Hockey America championship and thought it might host an NCAA quarterfinal game this weekend.

All season, they have been among the top five teams in the country.

But much to the Lakers’ and their fans’ surprise, they were passed over Sunday night during the NCAA field selection. After a sound 29-5-0 record and a national ranking ranging between three and five all season, a fourth seed seemed reasonable. But the top four seeds were the University of Wisconsin, Cornell University, Boston University, and Boston College.

Wisconsin and Cornell were obvious choices for a first and second seed. They both won their respective conferences and had only four total losses between them. They deserved their ranking. The final two spots were up for grabs.

Boston University finished the season 4-4-1 in its last nine games and lost in the conference semifinals to Northeastern University. Yet even after their rocky finish, the Terriers still received the third seed.

Boston College earned an appropriate seed. They won their conference, beating Northeastern in the championship game. This is the same Northeastern team that beat BU, who got seeded above Boston College. However, Boston College has one of the tougher trips to the championship, needing to beat No. 5 Minnesota and the winner of the Wisconsin/Minnesota-Duluth match-up to reach the title game.

Finally, Mercyhurst. They managed to win yet another conference title, finishing it off with a come-from-behind victory against host Syracuse. The Lakers finished fourth and fifth in the major polls. Somehow, that’s the seed they got.

Even though the seeding did not pan out quite as the team had hoped, the Lakers seem hungry to earn their place among the elite in women’s hockey.

“Everyone deserves to be in the final eight, and it won’t be an easy road,” coach Michael Sisti said.

Assistant captain Jesse Scanzano was equally displeased with the seeding.

“It is what it is, It’s just one game,” Scanzano said. ”We want revenge on everyone.”