Andrews St Cloud St

Colorado College freshman defenseman Nicklas Andrews, front, chases the puck with St. Cloud State forward Veeti Miettinen close behind on Dec. 18 in Omaha, Neb. The Huskies won 4-3 in overtime.

St. Cloud State is set to be Colorado College hockey’s first conference opponent of the Ed Robson Arena era, it was revealed Wednesday as the National Collegiate Hockey Conference released the 2021-22 league schedule.

The Huskies, who fell in the NCAA Division I Championship game April 10, will visit CC’s brand-new, on-campus arena Nov. 5-6.

Full nonconference schedules have yet to be announced. The Tigers will travel to face Union College, new coach Kris Mayotte’s alma mater, on Oct. 15-16 according to Union’s schedule.

The Tigers are set to host North Dakota (Dec. 10-11) Western Michigan (Jan. 14-15), Omaha (Jan. 28-29) and Miami (Feb. 18-19). Four dates against Denver on Jan. 21-22 and March 4-5 are listed as TBA. Traditionally those series have been home-and-home. The hosting order swaps for the second series.

Colorado College won’t host Minnesota-Duluth or travel to Western Michigan this coming season.

The NCHC schedule marked a return to the “traditional” format. In the conference’s ninth season of competition, all teams are set to play 24 league games — 12 Friday-Saturday series. This would differ from the 2020-21 pandemic-affected season, when any day of the week teams were healthy and available was fair game.

The college hockey season is scheduled to begin Oct. 2, with NCHC play starting the first weekend of November.

"We are excited for the opportunity our schedule provides," Mayotte said in a team release. "The NCHC challenges you every weekend to be at your best, and any time a league can send two teams to the Frozen Four it says a lot about its depth and quality.”

The NCHC tournament will also revert to its usual format, with a best-of-three first round held at campus arenas instead of a single-elimination round at a single host site. These are slated for March 11-13 with the 2022 NCHC Frozen Faceoff to follow at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minn., on March 18-19.

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