MADISON, Wis. – After posting a 27-7-2 record, the No. 2 Wisconsin women’s hockey team has earned the No. 4 seed in the 2014 NCAA Tournament and will host Harvard in the quarterfinals on Saturday, March 15, in a 7 p.m. tilt at LaBahn Arena.
“I think the exciting part is we get to host a quarterfinal game,” UW head coach Mark Johnson said. “The body of work we had during the season put us in a position to host a game, and to me that’s the most exciting part. We’ve hosted in the past, and we’ve had success.”
The Badgers own a 27-7-2 record after finishing second in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association. The Cardinal and White has one of the nation’s best goaltenders in senior Alex Rigsby, as the All-WCHA First-Team honoree ranks second in the nation in save percentage with a .950 clip and third in the nation in goals against with a 1.18 mark. Ammerman leads the UW offense, averaging 1.17 points per game, which ranks 18th nationally.
Harvard, ranked No. 5 in the USCHO.Com Poll, enters the weekend with a 23-6-4 record after falling in the semifinals of the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference tournament to eventual tournament champion Cornell. The Crimson is led by goaltender Emerance Maschmeyer, who was a top-10 finalist for the 2014 Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award, along with UW forward Brittany Ammerman. Maschmeyer ranks fifth in the nation in save percentage with a .942 clip.
Wisconsin holds a 4-1-0 record against Harvard, with the lone loss coming in the program’s inaugural season in 1999. The Badgers have two postseason wins against the Crimson with both among the most memorable wins in program history. Wisconsin defeated Harvard, 1-0, in a four-overtime thriller at the Kohl Center on March 10, 2007 as Jinelle Zaugg scored the game-winning goal to propel the Cardinal and White to the 2007 NCAA Frozen Four, where Wisconsin captured its second national title. The following season, Wisconsin met Harvard in the semifinals of the 2008 NCAA Frozen Four as the Badgers defeated the Crimson, 4-1.
The quarterfinal game marks the first time Wisconsin has hosted a NCAA contest at LaBahn Arena, after achieving a 4-0 record in NCAA games held at the Kohl Center. The Badgers are 16-3 in their previous 19 NCAA tournament games with UW capturing national titles in 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2011.
“The last times we’ve hosted at the Kohl Center, we’ve had big crowds for those games,” Johnson said. “Having 2,300 people at LaBahn and having our band will create a great atmosphere. We have played at LaBahn for two years, and have had success there. Hosting a game at LaBahn is huge for us.”
Ticket sales will begin Monday, March 10, at 8:30 a.m., and can be purchased online at UWBadgers.com, over the phone at 1.800.GO.BADGERS, or in person at the Wisconsin Athletic Ticket Office in Kellner Hall.
Season tickets, promotional coupons, sports passes or red cards are not valid for admission to NCAA tournament games. All fans will need a ticket for admission regardless of age.
With the WIAA Boys State Basketball Tournament going on simultaneously, a limited amount of event parking will be available for purchase for $8 in lots 91, 46, 29 and 83. Lots 87 and 48 will also be available to patrons with accessible needs
The winner of Saturday’s game will advance to the 2014 Frozen Four, which will be held at TD Bank Sports Center in Hamden, Conn., on March 21 and 23.