UND takes over top spot in both national hockey polls
North Dakota completed its surge all the way to the No. 1 in both national college hockey polls, claiming the top spot in Monday's editions for the first time this season. Former No. 1 Minnesota State fell to No.2 after a road loss this past week, giving the top spot to North Dakota for the first time since Oct. 24, 2016.
UND's continued climb up the polls has been steady and uphill the entire way. North Dakota debuted this season with a No. 18 ranking and has climbed all the way to No. 1 thanks to a current 13-game unbeaten streak and an impressive 14-1-2 overall record to date. UND remains just one of two schools to have just one loss on the season, joining third-ranked Cornell. The Fighting Hawks claimed 33 of the 50 available first-place votes in the USCHO.com poll.
North Dakota has now been a No. 1-ranked team in four of the last six seasons and three of the five under head coach Brad Berry. UND is also atop the NCAA's Pairwise Rankings, a system which attempts to mimic the method used by the NCAA Selection Committee to determine participants for the NCAA Division I men's hockey tournament. The PWR compares all teams by these criteria: record against common opponents, head-to-head competition, and the RPI.
Overall, half of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference's teams are ranked in this week's poll: North Dakota (1), Denver (6), Minnesota Duluth (10) and Western Michigan (19).
North Dakota returns to action Dec. 28 with an exhibition at the U.S. Under 18 National Team in Plymouth, Mich., before returning to regular-season play Jan. 3-4 by hosting Alabama-Huntsville