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College Hockey:
Three things I learned about the WCHA this weekend

1. Ferris ain’t goin’ anywhere

Rumors of Ferris State’s demise apparently have been premature. After dropping three games in a row, the Bulldogs have now won three straight, including this weekend’s sweep over Northern Michigan. Ferris State reminded the WCHA who was in first place with a 7-1 win on Friday and won 2-1 on Saturday. Goalie C.J. Motte was back to form, it appeared, with  a rock-solid weekend, stopping 58 of 60 shots in the series. And the goal scoring was spread around with Garrett Thompson and  Corey Kane each scoring twice. Ferris State holds a two-point lead over Minnesota State, which is making its own push, but has two games in hand as it tries to clinch the MacNaughton Cup.

 2. Sweeps mean seismic shifts in the standings

The WCHA standings remain ever-so tight, so a sweep can be huge for any team that’s able to score one. Michigan Tech went from a tie for fifth place to third with its two wins over Alabama Huntsville. The Huskies are six points out of second but lead Alaska Anchorage and Bowling Green by just one point. Four points currently separate third place from seventh. Lake Superior State remained in ninth place — currently out of playoff position — with its split with Anchorage but is just one point behind Northern Michigan, which lost those two games to Ferris State. Those two teams will play each other in Marquette this weekend, while Bowling Green and Alaska Anchorage, which are tied for fourth, play each other in Anchorage.

 3. A disturbing stat for Bemidji State

Bemidji State seems to be a very good team that certainly can give opponents fits. Both Friday and Saturday, the Beavers were tied with the Mavericks in the third period in Mankato, only to lose the games 5-2 and 3-2.  ”I think they’re as committed as any team at what they do,” Minnesota State coach Mike Hastings told the Mankato Free Press. “They’re not going to give you out-numbered rushes; they’re not going to give you out-numbered situations at their net. They’re going to make you grind and go through. … I respect how they play from the standpoint that it’s hard to play against. So if you’re not willing to do the hard things, you’re not going to score against them.” Considering  that, here is a key stat for the Beavers, who are three points out of home-ice spot but also two points out of that dreaded ninth-place position: When allowing more than one goal in a game, they are just 1-15-7 this season. 

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