Predictions for all four MCSSIHL Cup tournaments

All four MCSSIHL Cup tournaments are slated to get underway this week, beginning with some semifinal games on Wednesday. Here’s a look at each tournament, with my predictions on how things will unfold.

Last year’s champion: Morristown-Beard (back-to-back titles in 2019-20 and 2020-21)
Seeds and schedule: Can be found here.

1-Morris Knolls-Hills over 4-Chatham
3-Morristown-Beard over 2-Randolph

Final: 3-Morristown-Beard over 1-Morris Knolls-Hills
It’s not every day that I pick a three-seed to win a tournament, but with the way Morristown-Beard has played over the last week or so, it’s hard not to. The Crimson are coming off dominant wins over St. Peter’s Prep, Chatham, and Livingston in its last three games and appear to be playing its best hockey at the right time.

Last year’s champion: Madison (moved to Mennen Division)
Seeds and schedule: Can be found here.

2-Mendham over 3-Mountain Lakes-Boonton
1-Morristown over 4-Kinnelon-Jefferson-Sparta

Final: 1-Morristown over 2-Mendham
Morristown has been the clear-cut top team in this division all season, going unbeaten with two 4-1 wins over Mendham under its belt. The return of Jack McKenna from injury recently gives a pretty balanced team another scoring option in time for the most important games of the year.

Last year’s champion: Mountain Lakes-Boonton (moved to Halvorsen Division
Seeds and schedule: Can be found here.

1-Mount Olive-Hopatcong-Hackettstown over 4-Park Regional
3-Vernon over 2-West Morris

1-Mount Olive-Hopatcong-Hackettstown over 3-Vernon
This tournament is probably the most volatile of the four Cups. There have been competitive games between these four teams all season and any of these four are capable of winning it all. That said, MO-HO-HA is the favorite after going unbeaten in Haas play this year, and it will find a way past a dangerous Vernon team that has momentum on its side after back-to-back thrilling wins just to qualify for this tournament.

Last year’s champion: Bernards-Somerville-Middlesex
Seeds and schedule: Can be found here.

2-Newton-Lenape Valley over 3-High Point-Wallkill Valley-Kittatinny
1-Bernards-Somerville-Middlesex over 4-Morris Catholic-St. Elizabeth

1-Bernards-Somerville-Middlesex over 2-Newton-Lenape Valley
In the inaugural iteration of this tournament last winter, we saw third-seeded Bernards take down fourth-seeded NLV on a last minute-goal in the final after each pulled upsets in the semifinals. Expect these two teams, which have played a pair of tight games this season, to meet again in the final. In the end, Bernards’ scoring depth will propel it to its second-straight Charette Cup title.

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