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NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. — Merrimack College will host New Hampshire in the first round of the Hockey East playoffs next week, with Game 1 on Thursday night at J. Thom Lawler Rink.

The Warriors swept Vermont this weekend, which put the Warriors into seventh place in the league standings. New Hampshire led 4-1 at home against Connecticut on Saturday night, and with a win would have hosted Vermont and forced UConn into a road trip here to Merrimack next week.

Related: Tickets for the Merrimack-UNH series are available now

However the Huskies stormed back to tie the score and then win the game in overtime, which puts UNH on the road as well as Vermont; the Huskies will host Vermont next weekend.

New Hampshire beat Merrimack, 4-2, back on Oct. 31 on a night the Warriors out-attempted the Wildcats, 75-30. Then on Nov. 14, Merrimack tied UNH 3-3. Both of those games were at Lawler Rink.

Merrimack has never hosted UNH in a Hockey East playoff series. The last time the teams met in a best-of-three series was the 2002 Hockey East quarterfinals, where the Wildcats swept (6-2, 5-4 in overtime).

The last time Merrimack and UNH met in the postseason, Merrimack beat the Wildcats 4-1 in the Hockey East semifinals at TD Garden on March 18, 2011.

Mike McMahon is in his 13th year covering Merrimack College for The Eagle Tribune and is the founder and managing editor of The Mack Report. Mike also serves on staff as a senior writer at College Hockey News. Follow him on Twitter @MikeMcMahonCHN

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