Saturday, March 6, 2010

Game One to Bucky

Things started off well for the Gopher hockey team Friday night against top-three team Wisconsin when Ryan Flynn notched a short-handed goal four minutes into the game. However, Bucky eeked out a victory in the first game at Target Center, winning 3-2.

Craig Smith scored the game-winner for the Badgers with under five minutes remaining to allow Wisconsin to escape the Target Center with a victory over Minny for the second time in eight tries.

With the Gophers' loss and Colorado College's victory over Denver means the Gophers will finish seventh in the WCHA standings this season. Their first round opponent remains to be determined pending the results of Saturday's games. However, it renders Sunday's finale with the Badgers meaningless, as Wisconsin will finish second by virtue of the win over the Gophers. UW's first round opponent is yet to be decided, as either Minnesota State or Alaska-Anchorage can still finish ninth.

So, to recap quickly, positions one (Denver), two (Wisconsin), six (Colorado College), seven (Minnesota), and ten (Michigan Tech) are locked in for the WCHA. St. Cloud State, UMD, and North Dakota are jockeying for positions three-five, and Minnesota State and Alaska-Anchorage are fighting for positions eight and nine. All will be decided after Saturday night's action.

Roman Augustoviz has a good breakdown of first round possibilities in his blog. The Gophers should have their opponent known by 9:30pm Saturday night. It's looking like a strong possibility that the Gophers may be heading to Grand Forks next weekend, which was definitely a worst-case scenario going into the weekend.

Friday night's loss also quaranteed the Gophers a sub-.500 mark in WCHA regular season play. Six months ago, that seemed an impossibility.

Elsewhere around the WCHA:

No comments:

Post a Comment