Three things from the weekend, Jan 24

1. Mavericks make statement

Minnesota State bounced back from a one-point weekend at Michigan Tech in big-time fashion, scoring 13 goals in a romp over Lake Superior State in Mankato. The Mavericks won 8-0 and 5-1 against a team that had made some real strides defensively this season. One weekend might not be enough to make a trend, but if MSU has indeed found the goal-scoring touch it had been missing for much of the season, it could spell trouble for the rest of the league. Minnesota State is now 10-0-0 all-time against Lake Superior State. Forward C.J. Franklin, who had three goals and two assists this weekend, has 12 career points in eight games against the Lakers.

2. Bulldogs burst in

In each of its first eight league series, Ferris State secured two points for the league standings, hanging around and keeping itself in the hunt for home ice. In each of the last two series, however the Bulldogs have gotten three points, and they’re suddenly in a tie for third place. This weekend, Ferris played two overtime games at Bemidji State (surprise, surprise!) and got a win and a tie. On Friday, the Bulldogs’ Simon Denis forced OT with an extra-attacker goal with 25 seconds to play in regulation, and Mitch Maloney won it 47 seconds into extra time. On Saturday, goalie Darren Smith stopped 35 of 36 Bemidji State shots to get the tie. (Smith had 28 saves on Friday.)

3. Falcons fly forward

Bowling Green kept pace with Minnesota State in the race for the MacNaughton Cup by beating visiting Alaska Anchorage in straight sets 6-2, 6-2 on Thursday and Friday. The Falcons are three points behind the Mavericks in the standings but have two games in hand. They play an important series this coming weekend when they host Michigan Tech. Bowling Green’s offense exploded against the Seawolves, who were on the back half of a two-weekend road swing (the went 1-3-0 on the trip and have just one win in their last eight games). In the opener, the Falcons scored five goals in the second period; on Saturday, they had a three-goal first. Brandon Hawkins had a stellar weekend with three goals and two assists.

18 COMMENTS

  1. Probably makes it a lot easier for travelling fans to make arrangements to travel and get time off from work. Any increase in lead time can make a huge difference in that department.

    • Saturday is typically the lowest night for TV ratings across the board. I would think this is more likely for the gate. Monday night for the final would probably get more viewership, so if there is a TV consideration, that might be it.

      Also, there is less sports competition on Monday night for the championship.

  2. Semi’s on Saturday would be nice so I wouldn’t have to leave work early on Thursday to catch the early semi game on TV. For the people that actually travel to the FF, I’m not sure it really matters.

  3. With regards to the 18,000 seat minimum and Boston’s TD Garden, I am sure there is a waiver process, especially for a city that has hosted many Frozen Fours since the very earliest NCAA championships.

    I am sure that such a waiver would be granted for Detroit, Minneapolis and Denver for the same reason, if the building size was close to the requirement. It might exclude some newer venues that did have successful Frozen Fours.

    • Pepsi Center in Denver lists 18,007 as capacity for hockey, so that isn’t a problem. Detroit will be interesting depending on how the new arena is configured, but they clearly should host at some point.

      • I figured it was but thanks for the update.

        I am not sure the NCAA will say no to Boston selling 17,500 tickets opposed to Denver selling 18,000 tickets. I think this rule, frankly, was to get former hosts like Providence and Albany out of the rotation, because the buildings are smaller and without NHL/NBA caliber amenities.

  4. I hope that this change might also move the regionals a week later and have all first round games played on Saturday and all second round games played on Sunday.

  5. How about Friday / Sunday? That seems a lot better than Saturday / Monday. Boston, Minneapolis-St. Paul, and Detroit should host every 5 years and fill in other cities for the 2 other years. Having it away from Boston for so long is just plain stupid. There are more D1 teams within 50 miles of Boston than any other city. As for the size ( 18,000 seats ), unfortunately Boston is very expensive and ticket prices could be higher there to make back some revenue. Not that I want high prices as I am sick of the gauging here for all the pro teams. just a fact.

  6. I’d like to see the first round back on campus. I don’t think it will make much difference to play Saturday semi’s – Monday night finals. I’d love to see Gary Thorne announce the semi’s and final game on television as in years past. That alone will boost viewership.

  7. That leaves the host of the 1993, 1997 and 2006 Frozen Four out as well. The Bradley Center in Milwaukee has a hockey capacity of 17,800.

    • This Hockey East fan would support a waiver for the Bradley Center for the 200 “missing” seats.

      If the NCAA counts luxury boxes (which is probably what they want to do for the high-rollers) then Bradley Center/TD Garden are safe.

  8. I will take whatever days off I need no matter which days the games are played if I’m attending. Although Monday night is probably a better night for the championship with regards to tv, which I’m sure is why they are proposing this.

  9. Providence was a great host city. It’s a real shame the capacity spec knocked them out. Regionals will only be well attended when they’re on campus – should be at the No. 1 Seeds’ barns.

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