Three things, Dec. 7

Three things I think I learned from the weekend that was in the WCHA:

1. Nanooks are dangerous

Alaska gave No. 2 Minnesota State all it could handle and more over the weekend, splitting a series in Mankato. The Nanooks are good. Tyler Morley and Colton Parayko are legit all-league players. Freshman Austin Vieth is a solid rookie, who scored in OT on Friday. It’s too bad they won’t be able to compete in the postseason due to the NCAA sanctions that came down last month. Minnesota State, I’ll bet, is one team that’s glad it doesn’t face the prospect of Alaska coming back to town (or having to go to Fairbanks) for the playoffs. It was a tough matchup for the Mavericks. Alaska will be in spoiler mode for the second half of the season.

2. Falcons keep flying

Anyone who doubts the potency of Bowling Green anymore isn’t paying attention. The Falcons went on the road to Northern Michigan, which was the best defensive team in the country (allowing a measly 1.17 goals per game going into the weekend) and hung up 10 goals in the two games, five each night. The first game ended in a 5-5 tie, and the second was a 5-0 victory on a Chris Nell shutout. Wildcats goalie Mathias Dahlström appears to have come back to earth a bit, but Bowling Green came at him in waves, with six different players scoring goals in the series.

3. Upset opportunity fizzles

There was some early intrigue in Grand Forks, N.D., on Friday night when Lake Superior State went up 3-0 and 4-1 on No. 1 North Dakota. The Lakers, who were shut out in back-to-back home games a week earlier against Minnesota State, were trying to pull off a shocking upset — or at least continue a three-week trend of being the team that knocks No. 1 off its perch. In the end, order was restored, and UND won 7-4 and 3-1. Can the Lakers, who have lost six of seven, gain some confidence from their experience? They go to Ferris State next weekend. The Lakers are in a four-way tie for sixth place with Alaska as well as Alaska Anchorage and Bemidji State, who tied twice in their series in Anchorage.


    • I think most of the scenarios involve Ferris State beating BGSU in the WCHA championship (they’d both need to make it, so BGSU would probably be above BC based on 1 more win and FSU on the autobid) and SCSU winning more.

      • It would take a natural dissaster for BC NOT to make the field of 16. It should come down to Quinnipiac NOT wining ECAC, Ferris St winning WCHA, Minnesota NOT winning B10 and UNH or VT winning Hockey East; the proverbial snowball’s chance in Hell … but it has been very cold out lately!
        I wonder how many Eagle fans will be cheering “Go BU!” this weekend!!

        • I would imagine a Lowell/Vermont matchup in HE final would be part of it, meaning Lowell and UVM get in, Lowell at large and UVM as tourney champs. Not sure if there is enough to bump BC out with a UNH/UVM Final.

          UNH defeating BU in the final might work, too.

          Both scenarios involve lots of upset wins in WCHA, NCHC, BTHC and ECAC.

          • UML and UVM can’t match up in the HEA final, as they are playing in the semifinal against each other. Nor can UNH play BU in the final, as they play in the other semi. The winner of UML/UVM will either play UNH or BU in the final.

          • I knew I would get it wrong.

            UNH/Lowell final with UNH winning or BU/UVM final with UVM winning plus all the other tournaments making a mess seems the ways BC gets eliminated.

            I am hoping BU wins outright!

    • if that link doesn’t work for some reason, here’s how each game has to shake out…

      Atlantic Hockey Semifinal #1: Robert Morris def. Mercyhurst
      Atlantic Hockey Semifinal #2: Canisius def. RIT
      Atlantic Hockey Championship: Robert Morris def. Canisius
      Big Ten Semifinal #1: Minnesota def. Penn State
      Big Ten Semifinal #2: Michigan def. Michigan State
      Big Ten Championship: Michigan def. Minnesota
      Big Ten Play-in #1: Michigan def. Wisconsin
      Big Ten Play-in #2: Penn State def. Ohio State
      ECAC Semifinal #1: Quinnipiac def. Harvard
      ECAC Semifinal #2: St. Lawrence def. Colgate
      ECAC Championship: St. Lawrence def. Quinnipiac
      Hockey East Semifinal #1: New Hampshire def. Boston University
      Hockey East Semifinal #2: Vermont def. Mass.-Lowell
      Hockey East Championship: New Hampshire def. Vermont
      NCHC Semifinal #1: St. Cloud State def. North Dakota
      NCHC Semifinal #2: Miami def. Denver
      NCHC Championship: St. Cloud State def. Miami
      NCHC Consolation: Denver def. North Dakota
      WCHA Semifinal #1: Ferris State def. Minnesota State
      WCHA Semifinal #2: Bowling Green def. Michigan Tech
      WCHA Championship: Ferris State def. Bowling Green

    • According to Pairwise Predictor, stars would have to align perfectly for them to move into tie for 14th. They would have RPI edge on Bowling Green, if Bowling Green loses. If BG wins, UVM would tie for 15th with Yale and would have RPI advantage.

    • It is frustrating, but I think it has to do with how the cards around them fell & the algorithm involved. Without knowing the exact algorithm, it is a difficult question to answer.

  1. BU is finally at fourth on the Pairwise, so it can be a number one seed, probably in Manchester. The Terriers probably stay there if they win out.

    As always, the teams sitting 12-16 in Pairwise are hoping to win or see a lot of chalk if they lose or have no more games left.

      • 15-16-16t are Colgate, Harvard,Lowell, all still playing.
        14 is Providence, which is all done in HE playoffs.
        19 UVM is still playing whil 18 Yale is eliminated from ECAC playoffs.
        13 Minnesota has a 70% chance of making it, while Lowell has the next best chance of the bubble teams at 30%,

  2. Lots of sweating this year for some programs. As a UND fan, I remember all too well that feeling last year. Prefer this year where it is pretty much a guarantee they are a #1 seed and hopefully the top overall if they win a game or two.

    • No matter what happens this weekend, in any of the 3.1+ million scenarios, UND will be a #1 seed and can slide no further than #2 overall. They host a regional anyways, so location was never an issue either.

      • Would love to play RMU other than a lower at-large, however. Not that it really matters much, though. Every team that gets in deserves it.

      • Are there really 3.1+ million scenarios? Wow.

        Obviously I know where UND will be playing at this point for them I am hoping to have the top spot for one reason and one reason only. Then no matter who we play we are the home team and get that slight advantage of having last change, etc. That’s all its about for UND at this point making sure they can get that top overall spot if possible.

    • So true. I remember last year too when Denver was 24th in PWR going into Frozen Faceoff. Only hope was auto-bid. A lot of teams are in that position now.

  3. There is no way in hell Harvard should even be considered..They have been the most inconsistent team in the nation the second half of the season…I see a QPac-SLU ECAC final with the best goalie in the league Hayton and the Saints beating QPac 2-1 in OT

  4. If the four teams in the NCHC’s Frozen Faceoff were in one of the four NCAA Regionals it would automatically earn the Regional of Death title. 1, 3, 7, and 10 in the PWR. That’s two 1 seeds, one 2 seed, and one 3 seed.


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