NESCAC Quarterfinals Preview

The quarterfinal games are evenly split between 1 pm and 3 pm start times, with the early start times for 2 of the 4 games (Bowdoin at Hamilton and Tufts at Trinity) due to the host team also hosting a women’s quarterfinal game on Saturday. In 3 of the 4 games, the higher seed (Hamilton, Colby, Trinity) has a clear edge in momentum, making the home team the clear favorite.  In the fourth game (no. 5 Amherst at no. 4 Williams), neither team has any real momentum going into the quarterfinals but Williams has a slight edge due to the home ice advantage and Amherst’s struggles on the road.

So from our vantage point, we may be looking at something shocking in the NESCAC – an upset-free set of quarterfinal games. That last happened 8 years ago in the 2009 play-offs (it almost also happened in 2012 and 2013 but for the no. 5 seed defeating the no. 4 seed in each of those years). Predictions are just predictions, of course, and anything can happen on the ice, especially in this era of parity where narrow statistical analyses do not determine the actual outcome of games. Continue reading


Bowdoin’s 2016-17 roster posted

Here is a link to the 35-member Bowdoin roster. This relatively early posting of the Bowdoin roster is indicative of the fact that there is a new sheriff in town the form of new HC Jamie Dumont. The roster includes all of the names in our database except for F Steve Upton. Most of the veterans have returned for another year of action except for junior F Stevie Van Siclen. Van Siclen’s absence is likely due to an injury suffered during the Bowdoin soccer season (he was the no. 1 goalie prior to his injury in early October).

Four rosters down and six to go.

Bowdoin names Jamie Dumont as new head coach

Update: Here is link to a good article from a local newspaper (the Lewiston Sun Journal), which implies that former Bowdoin HC Terry Meagher began to groom Dumont as a possible successor a couple of years ago by turning over various administrative responsibilities to him. It also notes that Dumont sees the incoming class of recruits as one of the strongest classes of recruits during his tenure. And a link to an article in the Maine Hockey Journal that says similar things and goes into more depth on Dumont’s coaching experience in Europe.

Bowdoin, opting to go with continuity and familiarity, named assistant coach Jamie Dumont as its new head coach and replacement for the now retired Terry Meagher. Dumont has served a total of 9 years as Bowdoin’s assistant hockey coach in 2 separate stints (2001-05 and 2011-16) and was the Polar Bears’ primary recruiter during both periods. In between his 2 Bowdoin stints, he was an assistant hockey coach for D1 Bowling Green and garnered extensive international experience as a coach at the professional level in Bolzano, Italy. Dumont is unusually well positioned to to hit the ground running for the Polar Bears as he knows all the existing players and the incoming recruits, Bowdoin’s style of play (with its emphasis on speed and frequent deployment of a 3-back system), the NESCAC world (and its idiosyncrasies and rules), and the larger Bowdoin hockey community. He has a record of success as, during his 9 seasons as Bowdoin’s sole assistant coach and primary recruiter, the Polar Bears finished in the top 4 on 7 occasions during the regular season and finished just outside of the top 4 in 5th place in the 2 seasons in which it did not crack the top 4 (2014 and 2015).  Bowdoin has secured 2 NESCAC crowns (2013 and 2014) and 1 regular season championship (2013) during his past 5 seasons.

Dumont is a 1998 graduate of Oswego State where he was  4-year member of the varsity and served as an assistant coach at Oswego after graduation. He is a Maine native (Lewiston, which is about 25 miles north of Brunswick) but played his high school hockey at longtime New England schoolboy hockey powerhouse Mount St Charles. The 42-year-old Dumont  is only the third Bowdoin coach since 1959 and the 9th coach in Bowdoin’s history.

Congratulations to Jamie Dumont in his new but familiar post. He is the rare direct promotion from within in the NESCAC world as, in recent years, NESCAC schools have tended to look outward for new head coaches, turning  to another D3 school (Middlebury’s Neil Sinclair (Skidmore)), a prep school (Tufts’ Patrick Norton (Tilton)), USNTDP (Trinity’s Matt Greason), or a D1 school (Hamilton’s Rob Haberbusch (associate coach for Army), Colby’s Blaise MacDonald (assistant coach at UMass and former head coach at UMass-Lowell), Wesleyan’s Chris Potter (assistant coach at Brown), Williams’ Bill Kangas (assistant coach at UVM), and Conn College’s Jim Ward (assistant coach at Princeton)). (Both Sinclair and Greason had served prior stints at their respective schools as assistant coaches but had done something else outside of the school during the years immediately prior to being named head coach; Amherst’s Jack Arena followed an idiosyncratic path, going straight from being Amherst’s team captain in 1984 to its head coach in the fall of 1984.)

Colby and Bowdoin previews

Good commentary from the coaches and data for each team, courtesy of the Maine Hockey Journal, which does such a nice job covering all Maine-related hockey news.

Colby preview

Bowdoin preview

Bowdoin roster up

Bowdoin has posted its 33-member roster, featuring 12 newcomers and 21 veterans. The 12 newcomers include all 10 in our database plus 2 additional players in d-man Sam Carlin (Middlesex, ISL) and a sophomore forward who did not play last season (Samuel Rice (Hotchkiss, Founders)). The 20 veterans include all expected returners minus junior d-man Max Summermatter (played in only 1 game last year; may have been injured) and sophomore F/D Matt Crowell (a lacrosse recruit who was a hockey walk on last year). Bowdoin will likely be the youngest squad in the NESCAC with 11 freshmen, 11 sophomores, 8 juniors, and 3 seniors.

All rosters have now been posted except for Conn College’s.

Items on Bowdoin HC Terry Meagher’s decision to step down

An excellent article in the Bowdoin student newspaper with quotes from Meagher, Bowdoin AD Tim Ryan, and Bowdoin seniors Matt Rubinoff and Chris Fenwick.

A good piece in the Boston Herald.

Video on Meagher’s upcoming retirement, with brief comments by Meagher.

Bowdoin’s Terry Meagher to step down after this season

Big news out of Brunswick — there have rumblings to this effect for a year or two so not a total shock but still he is on the youngish side at about age 62. Also odd that the search for a new coach will not begin until after the 2015-16 season has ended . .

With the loss of 3 long-time NESCAC coaches within a year (Middlebury’s Beaney, Tufts’ Murphy, and now Meagher), the ranks of senior NESCAC coaches have been thinned out to just Amherst HC Jack Arena (entering his 33rd year like Meagher) and Williams HC Bill Kangas (entering his 27th year). We probably should not expect retirements any time soon from either Arena or Kangas as both are in their mid-fifties and still seem to have plenty of fuel in the old coaching tank. Next in line are Conn College HC Jim Ward and Wesleyan HC Chris Potter, both of whom are entering just their 13th year so relative newbies compared to Beaney, Meagher, Arena, and Kangas.