North Dakota may be the No. 1 seed in the West region, but Western Michigan is no ordinary fourth seed. The Broncos have been hot as well lately and in order to find themselves in the NCAA Tournament, they had to beat three of the other four CCHA teams that have made it this far. That includes both Miami and Michigan on back-to-back nights during the final weekend of the CCHA Tournament.
WMU's success has fully revolved around their defensive game. The entire blueline, led by top NCAA free agency candidate Danny DeKeyser, has been solid, and freshman goalie Frank Slubowski has been nothing but impressive behind them.
They shut down a powerful Miami RedHawks top six in the conference tournament, and their own offense, led by the top line of Shane Berschbach, Chase Balisy (Nashville Predators) and Dane Walters has scored 21 goals in their last five games. Western Michigan may not have the collective talent or NHL draft picks of a team like North Dakota, but they've proven that they can hang with and even beat those teams.
For more on the road to the Frozen Four in Tampa, stick with our 2012 NCAA hockey tournament StoryStream.