The New Hampshire high school hockey playoffs are scheduled to begin on Wednesday, but the top seeds in each division won’t be playing until Saturday.
In Division I and III, the top 10 reached the postseason, with the top six getting a bye into the quarterfinals. There will be two preliminary round games in each division on Wednesday, with the next round scheduled for Saturday. In Division II, eight make the postseason, and all will begin on Saturday.
Pinkerton (16-2) is the No. 1 seed in Division I, while Bedford (14-3) is the top team in Division II and Kennett (16-1) is No. 1 in Division III.
The preliminary round begins on Wednesday, with No. 9 Bishop Guertin (7-8-1) traveling to face No. 8 Londonderry (8-8-2) at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday at Cyclones Arena in Hudson. The teams played there last Saturday in the regular-season finale, with the Lancers taking an 4-0 victory. The teams played twice this season, with Londonderry also winning the first meeting, 6-0.
The winner of Bishop Guertin-Londonderry will get to face No. 1 Pinkerton at 4 p.m. Saturday at the Ice Den in Hooksett.
The other opening-round game will be No. 10 Salem (8-8-2) at No. 7 Concord (8-8-2). That game will be played Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Everett Arena in Concord. The winner of that game will take on No. 2 Manchester Memorial (14-2) in the quarterfinals.
In Saturday’s other quarterfinal matchups, No. 4 Trinity (10-6-2), the defending champs, will host No. 5 Hanover (8-6-2), while No. 3 Bishop Brady (11-5-2) will host No. 6 St. Thomas (9-6-1).
The semifinals are scheduled for March 7, starting at 5:30 p.m., at JFK Coliseum in Manchester. The final will be March 10 at 4:30 p.m. at the Verizon Wireless Arena.
Bedford, in its second year in the division, is the No. 1 seed and will host No. 8 Timberlane (8-10) in a quarterfinal game Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at St. Anselm’s College. The Bulldogs defeated the Owls twice this season, winning 7-4 on Dec. 21 and 4-0 on Feb. 22.
The winner of that game will face either No. 4 Oyster River (11-7) or No. 5 Goffstown (8-7-3) in the semifinals. The Bobcats will host the Grizzlies in the quarterfinals Saturday.
No. 2 Merrimack (14-4) will host No. 7 Spaulding (8-8-2) at 4 p.m. Saturday at West Side Arena in Manchester in the quarterfinals. The Tomahawks won the only regular-season meeting this season, 8-5, on Dec. 17.
The winner moves on to the semifinals, where it will face either No. 3 Dover (12-5), last year’s champion, or No. 6 Lebanon (9-8-1). The Green Wave will host the Raiders at 4:10 p.m. Saturday at the Dover Ice Arena.
The semifinals are scheduled for March 7, starting at 5:30 p.m., at the Rinks in Exeter. The final is set for March 10 at 2:30 p.m. at the Verizon Wireless Arena.
Wednesday’s opening round games will feature No. 9 Portsmouth (8-9-1) at No. 8 Somersworth (9-9), the defending champ, and No. 10 John Stark/Hopkinton (9-9) at No. 7 Pembroke-Campbell (8-8-1).
Top-seeded Kennett will face either Portsmouth or Somersworth in the quarterfinals on Saturday, while No. 2 Alvirne (16-1) will host the winner of John Stark/Hopkinton-Pembroke-Campbell, also on Saturday.
In the other quarterfinals Saturday, No. 3 Pelham-Windham (14-3) will host No. 6 Belmont-Gilford (10-6) at 8:15 p.m. at The Icenter in Salem. The teams played once during the regular season, on Feb. 18, with Pelham-Windham winning 6-5.
No. 4 Hollis Brookline (11-6-1) will host No. 5 Souhegan (10-6-2) at 4 p.m. Saturday at Cyclone Arena in Hudson. The Cavaliers won the first regular-season meeting between the two, 8-5, and the teams skated to a 3-3 tie on Feb. 22.
The semifinals are scheduled for March 7, starting at 5:30 p.m., at Everett Arena in Concord. The final is set for 12:15 p.m. March 10 at the Verizon Wireless Arena.
No. 1 Lebanon (15-1) and No. 2 Hanover (14-2) are the top seeds and earned byes into the semifinals. Two other quarterfinal games will be played on Friday, with No. 4 Concord (10-6) hosting No. 5 Bishop Guertin (9-7) and No. 3 Oyster River (12-4) hosting No. 6 St. Thomas-Dover (6-10).
The semifinals are scheduled for March 6, starting at 5:30 p.m., at Everett Arena, with the final set for 10 a.m. March 10 at the Verizon Wireless Arena.