Hockey East champion Boston University was seeded first Sunday in the NCAA hockey tournament, followed by CCHA winner Notre Dame, Denver and Michigan.

Boston University (31-6-4), seeking its fifth national title and first since 1995, will open against Ohio State (23-14-4) on Saturday in the Northeast Regional at Manchester, N.H. The Terriers won the Hockey East regular-season and playoff titles, beating Massachusetts-Lowell 1-0 on Saturday night in the tournament final.

In the other first-round game in the region, North Dakota (24-14-4) will play host New Hampshire (19-12-5)

Notre Dame (31-5-3), the CCHA regular-season and tournament champion, will open against Bemidji State (18-15-1) on Saturday night in the Midwest Regional in Grand Rapids, Mich. The Irish beat Michigan 5-2 in the CCHA final. In the other first-round game in the region, Northeastern (25-11-4) will play Cornell (21-9-4).

On Friday night in the East Regional at Bridgeport, Conn., Michigan (29-11-0) will open against Air Force (27-10-2), and Yale (24-7-2) will play Vermont (20-11-5). Michigan, seeking its 10th title, is making its 19th straight tournament appearance.

In the West Regional in Minneapolis on Friday night, Denver (23-11-5) will play Miami (Ohio) (20-12-5), and Minnesota Duluth (21-12-8) will face Princeton (22-11-1).

Minnesota Duluth beat Denver 4-0 on Saturday night in the WCHA final to become the first team to win three games in three nights in the five-team finale.

The regional champions will advance to the Frozen Four at the Verizon Center in Washington. The semifinals are Thursday, April 9, and the final is Saturday, April 11.

The last three champions – Boston College (2008), Michigan State (2007) and Wisconsin (2006) – failed to earn spots. Minnesota also was left out, ending its tournament streak at eight.

AP-ES-03-22-09 1959EDT

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