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INDIANAPOLIS -- The National Collegiate Women’s Ice Hockey Committee announced Sunday the field of eight teams which will compete for the 12th National Collegiate Women’s Ice Hockey Championship. Quarterfinal competition will be conducted on the campuses of the participating school, while the 2012 Women’s Frozen Four will be hosted by Minnesota-Duluth on March 16 and 18 at Amsoil Arena in Duluth, Minn.

Eight teams are selected for the championship with the top four teams seeded.

Three conferences were awarded automatic bids for the 2012 tournament. The remaining five teams were selected at-large.

The automatic qualifying conferences and their representatives are: Minnesota from the Western Collegiate Hockey Association; St. Lawrence from ECAC Hockey; and Boston University from the Hockey East Association. Boston College, Mercyhurst, North Dakota, Cornell and Wisconsin were selected as at-large teams.

Two teams will compete at each of the four quarterfinal sites. Quarterfinals will be played Saturday, March 10, at the following schools: Boston College, Cornell, Minnesota and Wisconsin. The winning team from each quarterfinal will advance to the 2012 Women’s Frozen Four.

Wisconsin enters the tournament as the No. 1 seed and will host Mercyhurst Saturday, March 10 at 8 p.m. ET. No. 2 seeded Minnesota will host North Dakota Saturday, March 10 at 5 p.m. Cornell enters the tournament as the No. 3 seed, and will host Boston U. Saturday, March 10 at 2 p.m. Boston College, the No. 4 seed, will take on St. Lawrence on March 10 at 1 p.m. All times are Eastern.

The semifinal games will be played at 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. ET, Friday, March 16, and streamed live on NCAA.com. The championship game will be played live at 4 p.m. Eastern time, Sunday, March 18, on NCAA.com. 

Minnesota-Duluth has captured the most Women’s Frozen Four titles in the championship’s history with five (2001, 2002, 2003, 2008 and 2010). Wisconsin follows with four titles (2006, 2007, 2009 and 2011), claiming last year’s title with a 4-1 win against Boston University.