Last week Theresa: 8-4
Season Theresa: 97-58-16
Last week Tyler: 9-3
Season Tyler: 99-39-12
This week, the bye is the busiest of them all, as BSU, DU and UMD all face it. We also have four conference series and another non-con tilt with UAH.
Friday, January 28 and Saturday, January 29
No. 4 North Dakota (18-7-2, 13-5-0 WCHA) at No. 20 Colorado College (14-11-1, 8-8-0 WCHA)
Theresa: I’ll be at this series and I’m trying to think of what I’m going to see. Last time the Sioux came down to the Springs, they swept the Tigers in a close series with identical 3-2 scores and an overtime victory on Friday. My first inclination when I saw this series was a split given that seems to be UND’s m.o. lately and because CC needs some conference points pretty badly, but I think I’ll continue to gamble on the Fighting Sioux. UND sweep.
As an aside, I could also see a tie between the WCHA’s last two tie-less teams.
Tyler: UND is 2-2 in its last four games, all at home, which is unacceptable for those in Grand Forks. The Sioux will play angry with a chip on its shoulder, which will only amplify its intensity and physical play. Jason Gregoire has four goals and an assist since he returned to the UND line-up from injury four games ago. Evan Trupp also has five points in the last four games. Sioux sweep.
No. 8 Wisconsin (17-8-3, 9-7-2 WCHA) at Michigan Tech (3-18-3, 1-14-1 WCHA)
Theresa: See last week. Tech rule. UW sweep.
If you really want more insight than that, the Huskies haven’t beaten the Badgers since Nov. 2, 2007 and given how poorly Tech is doing this year, I can’t really pick them to repeat that feat. Particularly when the Badgers are learning to win games (10 of their last 11).
Tyler: Scott Gudmandson is just too solid right now for Tech’s sputtering offense. The Badgers’ goal total hasn’t exactly been high either but with Gudmandson between the pipes, that’s OK. UW sweep.
Minnesota State (10-11-5, 4-11-3 WCHA) at St. Cloud State (11-11-2, 7-8-1 WCHA)
Theresa: If, as Tyler said in his column this week, the Huskies are working on on-ice success to distract from off-ice issues, it’s been working. They haven’t lost since Dec. 11 and look to be finally becoming the team we thought they should be this year. The Mavericks, on the other hand, have slipped recently and although most of their losses have been close (one-goal), they’re still not finding ways to win. Therefore, Huskies, you have restored my faith. SCSU sweep.
Tyler: MSU has lost close games to good teams because it can’t finish off scoring opportunities and the Mavericks are going against a hot goalie for the second week in a row in Mike Lee. Those pucks are going to have have to slip by eventually, though. Split.
Alaska-Anchorage (7-12-3, 6-10-2 WCHA) at Minnesota (10-9-3, 7-7-2 WCHA)
Theresa: The Seawolves come into this series after a rough weekend in Denver, rolling into Minnesota after spending this past week in the lower 48. The Gophers come into this series with a bit of rest under their belt after the bye. I don’t think I subscribe to any theories that the bye helps/hinders teams, since I’ve seen teams perform well after bye weeks and also play like crap since they’re rusty. Both teams are going to be amped for this series and I think ultimately it’ll be a fun one to watch. The question is, what to pick? I could see UAA pulling another sweep out, but I could also see the Gophers doing the same thing. I’ll just go with the happy medium and pick a split – UM Friday, UAA Saturday.
Tyler: The Gophers have scored only 21 goals in 10 games and the scoring slump has to stop this weekend. UAA’s Rob Gunderson is a young goalie with an .896 (57th in the nation) save percentage. Minnesota sweep.
Alabama-Huntsville at No. 15 Nebraska-Omaha (13-9-2, 10-6-2 WCHA)
Theresa: In which the WCHA takes on the D-I independent Chargers once again. I will also, once again, repeat that I am happy teams in the league are picking up UAH for their schedules to keep the team afloat. However, I will also, once again, pick the WCHA team here. UNO sweep.
Tyler: This one doesn’t require much explanation so if the Mavericks can take UAH out of the games early, this will be an easy UNO sweep and that’s my call.