CENTERVILLE, Mass.—Following its first Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) East Tournament Championship since 2009 and a trip to the NCAA quarterfinals, the Babson College men's ice hockey team was picked to finish third when the league released its 2013-14 preseason coaches' poll on Monday.
Defending regular-season champion Norwich University came in first with 93 points, earning six first-place votes, followed by the University of Massachusetts-Boston, which received 88 points. The Beavers were third with 86 points, and were followed by Castleton State University in fourth and Skidmore College to round out the top five.
Babson, which is ranked 10th nationally in the USCHO.com poll, and 12th in the D3hockey.com rankings, returns 21 letterwinners from a team that finished at 18-7-5 in 2012-13. The Beavers went 8-2-2 over their final 12 games, beating Norwich 2-1 in the ECAC East title game and topping Wentworth, 6-1, for its first NCAA Tournament victory since 1992.
The Green and White will open its season on Saturday night against Curry College in the first of four straight home games at 7 p.m.