Saturday, March 21, 2009

Not Out Yet.......

Highlights from Friday (from a Gopher fan who wants his team to get an at-large NCAA bid's perspective):
  • Denver 3, Wisconsin 0 = Good
  • Minnesota-Duluth 3, North Dakota 0 = Not good
  • Boston University 3, Boston College 2 = Good (Gophers would have been out had BC won, because...
  • Mass-Lowell 3, Northeastern 2 (OT) = Very Bad (Gophers need to make sure Lowell does not win tomorrow)
  • Michigan 3, Alaska 1 = Good
  • Notre Dame 2, Northern Michigan 1 = Good
  • Cornell 4, Princeton 3 (2OT) = Good
  • Yale 4, St. Lawrence 3 = Good

So, the current PairWise is here.

UMD cemented a bid with their impressive win over North Dakota Friday night at the WCHA Final Five, so the Gophers can forget about leapfrogging them (a loss to North Dakota would and a Wisconsin win in the third place game on Saturday would have made that a possibility). Wisconsin is most likely out with its loss to Denver. The Badgers absolutely needed to go 2-0 this weekend to make the tournament. St. Lawrence's loss knocks them out of the field, and the prospects of a Cinderella story in the CCHA were eliminated as far as Alaska and Northern Michigan are concerned, as Michigan and Notre Dame meet for the title on Saturday. That is good for the Gophers, as neither NMU and Alaska can pass the M&G now.

The only wrinkle is in Hockey East. Lowell's victory over Northeastern screwed things up for the Gophers. Had Northeastern won Friday, we'd most likely be looking at a Gopher bid. Now, the prospect of Lowell winning Hockey East puts Minnesota's potential bid in jeopardy, as Lowell can pass the Gophers with a win over Boston University. A watchful eye will be on that game Saturday evening.

North Dakota cost itself a #1 seed with its loss to UMD. Denver will likely retain its top seed win or lose Saturday.

WCHA Championship Game:

  • #7 UMD (or rather, Alex Stalock) vs. #2 Denver - The Pioneers went 3-1-0 against UMD this season. Can Stalock continue his unconsciousness and complete the sweep for the Dogs?
  • Prediction - Denver wins a close one, delivering classy coach George Gwozdecky a second-straight Broadmoor Trophy.

WCHA Third Place Game (or "The Don Lucia Classic):

  • #3 Wisconsin vs. #1 North Dakota - The teams split four games this season with each winning a game on the other's home ice. Wisconsin's season is over win or lost and UND will not have a seeding for which to play (they're pretty much locked into a second seed). This one will likely be one for the backups.
  • Prediction - Who cares? However, UND wins.....

Keep the faith, Gopher fans!

1 comment:

  1. From the PWR predictor: if St. Lawrence beats Princeton, the Gophers are basically in. StL beating Pr give the Gophers the 13th spot in the PWR, which should make it in even if Lowell pulls off the miracle.