The Western Collegiate Hockey Association released its preseason polls on Monday, and the University of Alabama in Huntsville hockey team was predicted for finish eighth overall in both the Mankato Free Press Preseason Coaches' Poll and the Bemidji Pioneer Preseason Media Poll.
Defending MacNaughton Cup and two-time reigning Broadmoor Cup Champion Minnesota State has been predicted to finish first overall in the WCHA by both the WCHA coaches and media. Michigan Tech was picked to finish second in the media poll and third in the coaches voting, while Bowling Green was tabbed second in the coaches poll and third in the media poll.
Preceding the Chargers in the fourth through seventh slots were rival Bemidji State, Alaska Fairbanks, Ferris State and Northern Michigan. Alaska Anchorage was voted ninth in the coaches' poll and 10th by the media, with Lake Superior State earning a ninth-place nod by the media and a 10th place prediction by the coaches.
Junior Carmine Guerriero – who set the league's single-game save record with 76 against Michigan Tech in the WCHA Playoffs this past spring – earned the most recognition for UAH, as the squad's netminder earned one vote for WCHA Player of the Year in the Bemidji Pioneer Preseason Media Poll. He also received votes for the Preseason All-WCHA team in both the coaches' and media poll.
Sophomore Max McHugh – a 2014-15 WCHA All-Rookie team honoree – earned votes in the media poll for the Preseason All-WCHA team, while newcomer Jetlan Houcher earned a nod for Preseason Rookie of the Year in the media vote.
UAH looks ahead to a visit from Connecticut to start the 2015-16 campaign, with opening weekend slated for Oct. 9-10 at the Von Braun Center.