May 18, 2011

New playoff format announced for Atlantic Hockey

PR Wire Report 

HAVERHILL, Mass. -- Following the Atlantic Hockey Association directors’ annual spring meeting, which took place in Boston earlier this week, commissioner Bob DeGregorio announced that the Atlantic Hockey 2012 postseason tournament will have a new format.

"The Directors have agreed to a 12-team format, with all teams seeded based on the results of the regular season standings,” stated DeGregorio. "The top four teams will receive a bye in the first round. The first-round match-ups will be the 5th seed hosting the 12th seed, the 6th seed hosting the 11th seed, the 7th seed hosting the 10th seed, and the 8th seed hosting the 9th seed. This series will be a best two-out-of-three."

The quarterfinal round will also be a best-of-three series. The top four seeds will host the four teams advancing from the First Round, with re-seeding taking place.

The four teams advancing will be reseeded for the semifinals. The winner of the Atlantic Hockey tournament championship will earn the league's automatic bid into the NCAA tournament. 

“I think the new format is going to further enhance the competitiveness of the league and it will certainly place more importance on the regular season schedule and where teams finish in the standings,” DeGregorio stated.

The league is comprised of 12 members: Air Force, AIC, Army, Bentley, Canisius, UConn, Holy Cross, Mercyhurst, Niagara, Robert Morris, Rochester Institute of Technology and Sacred Heart.