THE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP MATCHUP IS SET

Well, college hockey fans, the day is here, the 2024 NCAA Mens Hockey National Championship game is now. 60 teams started the season with high hopes of making a trip to St. Paul, but only two remain, Boston College and the University of Denver face off for all the marbles. Now, how did we get here? Let’s take a trip to recap the two teams’ playoff trips to this point.

Denver University entered the NCHC as the favorite to come out on top again, and well, that’s what they did. Taking down the University of Minnesota Duluth in two games, first 4-0 then 5-2. The Pioneers ended one Minnesota team season, so why not another, Denvers’ next victim was St. Cloud State in the NCHC Frozen Faceoff Semifinals inside the Excel Energy Center 5-4 in overtime. Again, Denver made their way into the Frozen Faceoff championship game. This time it was the tournament’s underdog, Omaha, who they handled with ease, winning 4-1 and claiming another NCHC championship.

 

In the NCAA tournament, Denver had to battle their way to St. Paul, first taking down UMASS 2-1 in overtime. advancing to the Northeast Regional Final against Cornell. Cornell gave the Pioneers a run for their money, but Denver prevailed in a close 2-1 victory, punching their ticket to the Frozen Faceoff. Stying on queue for the Pioneers, they ground out another win, and again in overtime. It took four periods for Minnesota’s very own Tristan Broz to give Denver the 2-1 overtime win over Boston University.

“I think it’s every kid’s dream to do that, to get a chance to end a game like that,” said Broz

Broz played his high school hockey for the Blake Bears before committing to the University of Minnesota. He played one season for the Gophers, but after a disappointing year, he transferred to Denver University.

“I had a rough freshman year, so when I had the chance to transfer to a school like Denver it felt like a good fit. It’s great to be able to play for Denver, and it’s felt like home now, I’m beyond happy to be a Pioneer,” said Broz.

Denver has a high-powered offense led by Jack Devine, who has scored 27 goals, and 29 assists for 56 points for the Pioneers. They are also led by their star goaltender, Matt Davis, who’s posted a 22-5-3 record, 2.42 GAA, and a .914 save percentage.

Tristan Broz, scored the game-winning goal for Denver on Thursday in Overtime. PHOTO BY DENVER UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS.

We move on to the Boston College Eagles, who have had a much more offensively dominant road to the title game. BC breezed by teams in the Hockey East tournament, taking down UCONN 5-4, UMASS 8-1, and Boston University 6-2. The NCAA Tournament wasn’t much different for the Pioneers, taking down Michigan Tech 6-1 in the Providence regional.

The Eagles’ final win of the NCAA tournament didn’t come easy although, taking down a tough Quinnipiac team 5-4 in overtime, BC’s first overtime win during the playoffs. The Eagle’s first matchup on Thursday in the Frozen Four was the high-tempo Michigan Wolverines. In typical 2024 Boston College hockey fashion, the Eagles’ fast-paced offense struck early and often. Their best scoring line of Gave Perreault, Will Smith, and Ryan Leonard proved impossible for the Wolverines to keep up with as they dominated the game. BC took down Michigan 4-0 to advance to the title game on Saturday. Boston College not only has an elite set of offensive skills, but they also have an elite goaltender in Jacob Fowler. Fowler posted a 32-5-1 record, 2.14 GAA, and a .926 save percentage for the Eagles.

Will Traeger is the lone Minnesotan on the Boston College Mens Hockey Team. PHOTO FROM BOSTON COLLEGE MENS HOCKEY.

These two teams faced each other once early in the season when Denver came out on top, 4-3 on October 21, 2023.

Gametime is set for 5:00 p.m. inside the Xcel Energy Center, and live on ESPN.