|(above) Western Michigan will play DU in the 1st Round of the NCAA Tournament|
by David Drew
Western Michigan University's hockey team knew it was headed to the NCAA tournament. It didn't make seeing it made official Sunday any less exciting.
The Broncos received an at-large bid and a No. 3 seed in the NCAA hockey tournament and will face the University of Denver at 5 p.m. Saturday at Resch Center in Green Bay, Wis., in the Midwest Regional.
Western Michigan lost 5-2 in Saturday's Central Collegiate Hockey Association championship game, but Friday's semifinal win over Michigan all but locked the Broncos into the NCAA tournament.
WMU last went to the NCAA tournament in 1996.
"It feels good," WMU coach Jeff Blashill said as players exited University Roadhouse after a team gathering to watch the selection show. "I think it's a great moment for our program. It's a great moment for the guys who have put in so much work throughout a great period of time to put themselves in this position as one of 16 teams playing to win four games to have a chance to win a championship.
"I'm extremely excited for our guys and extremely excited for Western Michigan that we're in this position."
The Western Michigan Department of Athletics in conjunction with the WMU Alumni Association are hard at work developing travel packages for alumni, fans and the Lawson Lunatics for Western Michigan hockey's NCAA Tournament game on Saturday against Denver in the Midwest Regional Semifinal at the Resch Center in Green Bay, Wis.