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1988 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Tournament

The 1988 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Tournament was the culmination of the 1987–88 NCAA Division I men's ice hockey season, the 41st such tournament in NCAA history. It was held between March 18 and April 2, 1988, and concluded with Lake Superior State defeating St. Lawrence 4-3 in overtime. All First Round and Quarterfinals matchups were held at home team venues with the 'Frozen Four' games being played at the Olympic Center in Lake Placid, New York.

1988 NCAA Men's Division I
Ice Hockey Tournament
Finals site
ChampionsLake Superior State Lakers (1st title)
Runner-upSt. Lawrence Saints (2nd title game)
Winning coachFrank Anzalone (1st title)
MOPBruce Hoffort Lake Superior State

For the first time the NCAA tournament was expanded to 12 teams (four more than the previous seven years) partially as a result of an increasing number of programs as well as two additional conferences being created in the interim.

This was the first tournament to include an independent school since 1960, more than a year before the ECAC was founded.


Qualifying teams[1]Edit

The NCAA permitted 12 teams to qualify for the tournament and divided its qualifiers into two regions (East and West). Each of the tournament champions from the four Division I conferences (CCHA, ECAC, Hockey East and WCHA) received automatic invitations into the tournament with At-large bids making up the remaining 8 teams. The NCAA permitted one Independent team to participate in the tournament and placed it in the western bracket with the intention to place an additional independent in the eastern regional in 1989. As a result, the two western conferences (WCHA and CCHA) would split only three open spots as opposed to the East's four open spots.

East West
Seed School Conference Record Berth type Appearance Last bid Seed School Conference Record Berth type Appearance Last bid
1 Maine Hockey East 31–7–2 At-large bid 2nd 1987 1 Minnesota WCHA 32–8–0 At-large bid 15th 1987
2 St. Lawrence ECAC Hockey 27–7–0 Tournament champion 10th 1987 2 Lake Superior State CCHA 30–6–6 At-large bid 2nd 1985
3 Northeastern Hockey East 20–12–4 Tournament champion 2nd 1982 3 Wisconsin WCHA 27–12–2 Tournament champion 9th 1983
4 Harvard ECAC Hockey 21–9–0 At-large bid 13th 1987 4 Bowling Green CCHA 28–11–2 Tournament champion 7th 1987
5 Vermont ECAC Hockey 21–9–3 At-large bid 1st Never 5 Michigan State CCHA 25–14–3 At-large bid 10th 1987
6 Lowell Hockey East 20–15–2 At-large bid 1st Never 6 Merrimack Independent 32–4–0 At-large bid 1st Never


The tournament featured four rounds of play. The three odd-number ranked teams from one region were placed into a bracket with the three even-number ranked teams of the other region. The teams were then seeded according to their ranking with the top two teams in each bracket receiving byes into the quarterfinals. In the first round the third and sixth seeds and the fourth and fifth seeds played two-game aggregate series to determine which school advanced to the Quarterfinals with the winners of the 4 vs. 5 series playing the first seed and the winner of the 3 vs. 6 series playing the second seed. In the Quarterfinals the matches were two-game aggregates once more with the victors advancing to the National Semifinals. Beginning with the Semifinals all games were played at the St. Paul Civic Center and all series became Single-game eliminations. The winning teams in the semifinals advanced to the National Championship Game.

Tournament Bracket[2]Edit

  First Round
March 18–20
March 25–27
Frozen Four
March 31-April 1
National Championship
April 2
  E1 Maine 5 4 9  
  W4 Bowling Green 1 3 4  
W4 Bowling Green 5 5 10  
E5 Vermont 1 1 2
  E1 Maine 3  
  W2 Lake Superior State 6  
  W2 Lake Superior State 3 5 8
  W6 Merrimack 4 0 4  
E3 Northeastern 5 3 8  
W6 Merrimack 3 7 10
  W2 Lake Superior State 4*
  E2 St. Lawrence 3
  W1 Minnesota 4 4 8  
  W5 Michigan State 2 3 5  
E4 Harvard 5 3 8  
W5 Michigan State 6 5 11
  W1 Minnesota 2
  E2 St. Lawrence 3  
  E2 St. Lawrence 7 3 10
  W3 Wisconsin 0 4 4  
W3 Wisconsin 7 4 11   Third Place Game
E6 Lowell 3 2 5
E1 Maine 5
W1 Minnesota 2

Note: * denotes overtime period(s)

First RoundEdit

(E3) Northeastern vs. (W6) MerrimackEdit

Merrimack won series 10–8

(E4) Harvard vs. (W5) Michigan StateEdit

Michigan State won series 11–8

(W3) Wisconsin vs. (E6) LowellEdit

Wisconsin won series 11–5

(W4) Bowling Green vs. (E5) VermontEdit

Bowling Green won series 10–2


(E1) Maine vs. (W4) Bowling GreenEdit

Maine won series 9–4

(E2) St. Lawrence vs. (W3) WisconsinEdit

St. Lawrence won series 10–4

(W1) Minnesota vs. (W5) Michigan StateEdit

Minnesota won series 8–5

(W2) Lake Superior State vs. (W6) MerrimackEdit

Lake Superior State won series 8–4

Frozen FourEdit

National SemifinalEdit

(E1) Maine vs. (W2) Lake Superior StateEdit

(W1) Minnesota vs. (E2) St. LawrenceEdit

Third Place GameEdit

(E1) Maine vs. (W1) MinnesotaEdit

National ChampionshipEdit

(W2) Lake Superior State vs. (E2) St. LawrenceEdit

All-Tournament Team[4]Edit

* Most Outstanding Player(s)[5]


  1. ^ "NCAA Division 1 Tournament". College Hockey Historical Archives. Archived from the original on 2013-06-21. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  2. ^ "NCAA Tournament". College Hockey Historical Archives. Retrieved May 19, 2013.
  3. ^ a b c d "Michigan State 2013-14 Hockey History" (PDF). Michigan State Spartans. Retrieved 2017-02-11.
  4. ^ "NCAA Frozen Four Records" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 2013-06-22. Retrieved 2013-06-19.
  5. ^ "NCAA Division I Awards". College Hockey Historical Archives. Retrieved 2013-07-17.