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SB Nation’s Women’s College Hockey Division 1 Poll: Home for the holidays

First half ends on the same chaotic note it endured throughout the fall

Ann-Renée Desbiens slams door shut on Ohio State and the first half of the season
Brent Cizek/brentcizekphoto.com

What would the last weekend of play this year be without some crazy upsets? The West decided it wanted to give the East a chance in the PWR rankings as we head to the holidays.

With the first half of the season of the books, we will be putting the poll on break for the remainder of 2016, to happily return in the new year. It has been a fun experience putting this poll together, and we look forward to continuing it.

1. Wisconsin (17-2-1), (16) 160 — Last Week: 1

• Last Week: W 7-0 @ Ohio St (12/9), W 5-0 @ Ohio St (12/10)

• Coming Week: No Games

Ann-Renée Desbiens came back fully in form with a pair of shutouts to earn the Badgers the distinction of Belles of the Ball. The wins vaulted the Wisconsin back into the top spot in the WCHA. They will head into the break as the pretty clear top team in the country.

2. Minnesota (15-3-2), 131 — Last Week: 2

• Last Week: W 5-1 @ Boston University (12/9), L 5-6 OT @ Boston University (12/10)

• Coming Week: No Games

The Gophers had a long miserable flight home from the Bay State Saturday night. After an expected blowout of the Terriers on Friday night, their goaltending fell apart on Saturday — giving up five regulation goals before losing in overtime to BU. A bad loss like that definitely cost them in some ballots, but they are still a tournament-bound team.

3. St. Lawrence (15-1-2), 122 — Last week: 5

• Last Week: No Games

• Coming Week: No Games

Ending for the break seems to look like a smart plan with the shockers that happened this weekend. The Saints had a great first half, only dropping points to rival Clarkson.

4. Clarkson (15-3-4), 113 — Last Week: 4

• Last Week: T 2-2 OT @ Syracuse (12/9), W 4-1 v Syracuse (12/10)

• Coming Week: No Games

The Golden Knights were unable to capitalize on some surprising loses for the western powers, playing to a tie against Syracuse.

5. Minnesota-Duluth (13-4-3), 103— Last Week: 3

• Last Week: W 3-0 @ Minnesota State (12/9), L 1-2 @ Minnesota State (12/10)

• Coming Week: No Games

Not wanting the Gophers to be the only Minnesota team with a bad loss, Duluth went and lost to a Mankato team that had only two other WCHA wins all season.

6. Boston College (12-3-3), 82 — Last Week: 6

• Last Week: W 6-1 @ Dartmouth (12/7)

• Coming Week: No Games

Boston College took the trek up to Hanover and scored the touchdown. They have scored 18 goals in their last three, all of which were on the road. When they return from the break they will get to enjoy a few home games.

7. Colgate (15-2-2), 51 — Last Week: T-7

• Last Week: No Games

• Coming Week: No Games

The Raiders have only lost two games all season — unfortunately both of them were the same weekend, in conference play, which has hurt their rankings after being a trendy dark horse pick in the preseason. They will head west to start the new semester.

8. Quinnipiac (13-4-3), 48 — Last Week: T-7

• Last Week: No Games

• Coming Week: No Games

Quinnipiac headed into the break in third place in the ECAC. They get one more game this calendar year before taking a swing at the Ivy League upon return.

9. Robert Morris (12-1-5), 27 — Last Week: 9

• Last Week: No Games

• Coming Week: No Games

Despite some struggles against Hockey East teams, the Colonials had one of the best first halves in the country. They host Brown for a pair, then they finish the season with 12 conference games.

10. North Dakota (8-6-5), 13 — Last Week: ARV

• Last Week: W 3-2 v St. Cloud State (12/10), W 4-0 v St. Cloud State (12/11)

• Coming Week: @ Lindenwood (12/16, 12/17)

North Dakota returns to the land of the ranked, despite struggling to beat St. Cloud State in the first game, by shutting the Huskies out the next day. Dakota has had a tough first half, only earning three weekend sweeps so far. They are the only ranked team in action this coming weekend, as they travel to Lindenwood.

***

Also Receiving Votes: Boston University 12, Cornell 8, Northeastern 7, Princeton 2, Minnesota State 1

Dropped Out: Vermont, Ohio State