(HALIFAX, NS) Atlantic University Sport is pleased to announce the 2016-17 men's regular season hockey schedule. The season is set to begin Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2016.
The 2016-17 league schedule will see all seven teams play each other five times for a total of 30 regular season games.
All teams will play 15 home games and 15 away games, with the additional home game against each team alternating on a yearly basis.
Beginning this season, the AUS men’s hockey overtime format will consist of a five-minute 3-on-3 sudden death overtime period, followed by a shootout, if necessary.
Previously, the format consisted of a 10-minute 4-on-4 overtime period, followed by a shootout.
The standings will consist of a single division with the top six teams qualifying for the AUS playoffs. The top two regular season finishers will receive byes to the conference semifinals.
All AUS regular and postseason games will be webcast at AUStv.ca powered by Bell Aliant. All games of the 2017 Subway AUS Men’s Hockey Championship final series, as well as select regular season games, will be broadcast live on Bell Aliant’s FibreOP TV1 on channels 1 and 401.
All seven AUS men's hockey teams will see action during the opening week of regular season play.
After narrowly making it to the 2016 postseason as the sixth seed, the UPEI Panthers upset the No. 3-seeded Acadia Axemen, winning their best-of-three quarter-final playoff series in two games. The Panthers’ postseason run ended in the AUS semi-final round when they were put out by the eventual 2016 CIS champion UNB Varsity Reds.
UPEI will look to build on last season’s success starting on opening night, Wednesday, Oct. 5 when they visit the Université de Moncton Aigles Bleus for a 7 p.m. game. The Aigles entered last season’s AUS playoffs as the fifth seed and were eliminated by the Saint Mary’s Huskies in the opening round. The Huskies went on to capture CIS bronze at the University Cup championship hosted in Halifax, N.S.
All remaining teams will see action Friday, Oct. 7 at 7 p.m. The Huskies will visit the Acadia Axemen in Wolfville, N.S. In an all-New Brunswick battle, the Aigles Bleus will travel to Fredericton to take on the reigning national champion UNB Varsity Reds.
In Halifax, the Dalhousie Tigers will look to rebound after missing the 2016 postseason. They will host the reigning AUS champion StFX X-Men at the Halifax Forum.
The regular season schedule will wrap up Saturday, Feb. 11 and will be followed by the 2017 Subway AUS men's hockey playoffs.
This year's AUS playoff format will once again feature a pair of best-of-three quarter-final series, followed by a best-of-five format in the semifinals and a best-of-three final round.
AUS is guaranteed three berths in the 2017 CIS University Cup, which is being hosted by UNB at the Aitken Centre in Fredericton, N.B. UNB will also host the 2018 national men’s hockey championship.
Should the Varsity Reds advance to the 2017 AUS final round, a best-of-three consolation final series will be held to determine the third team from the Atlantic conference to compete in the CIS championship.
The 2017 CIS University Cup will be held March 16 to 19.
The remainder of the 2016-17 AUS schedules will be released later this week.