Splits, a sweep and paradigm shifts

To say that the results from B1G hockey this weekend were surprising would be a bit of an understatement — unless you’re Michigan State, Ohio State and Michigan.

1. Two B1G splits.

The Spartans went to Madison and came away with three points after beating Wisconsin 2-0 Friday night before losing 5-2 Saturday. After a shaky start to the second half of the season — after such a promising first half — Michigan State sophomore John Lethemon made 30 saves in his fourth shutout of the season, the fifth of his career. The Friday win gives the Spartans their third conference victory of the season, but Michigan State is still in last place.

That loss, though, cost Wisconsin a chance to move up in the standings, given the other activity of the weekend. Now with the split, the Badgers are in fifth place with 17 points, a point behind Michigan.

The Buckeyes went to State College and came away with three points after first losing to Penn State 5-2 Friday before beating the Nittany Lions 5-1 the following night. Each team ended the other’s streak; Ohio State saw its six-game win streak snap on Friday, and the Nittany Lions saw their 11-game unbeaten streak stopped Saturday. Ohio State freshman goaltender Tommy Nappier made 30 saves when he won his first Big Ten start. He also stopped a penalty shot in the contest. Uncharacteristically, the Buckeyes outshot the Nittany Lions 42-31 in the contest.

More importantly, the split kept each team where it was in the standings at the start of the weekend. The Buckeyes were ahead of Penn State by two points entering the weekend, with Ohio State in second and Penn State in third. That hasn’t changed, and now the Nittany Lions are still chasing the Buckeyes and the teams are done playing each other for the season.

Of course, everyone’s chasing Notre Dame, but that’s another story.

2. A B1G sweep.

The Wolverines went to Minneapolis and came away with six points — something that hasn’t happened since Michigan last swept Minnesota on the road in 1977. The six points catapulted Michigan from sixth to fourth in conference standings, something that if the Wolverines can maintain would mean home ice in the Big Ten playoffs.

Michigan won by getting off to fast starts in both games; the Wolverines outscored the Golden Gophers 5-1 collectively in the first period for the weekend. Junior Brendan Warren scored three of his six total goals of the season against the Gophers. Sophomore Hayden Lavigne picked up his fifth and sixth wins of the season, stopping 41 in the process.

The losses give Minnesota a 4-9-1-1 conference record and drop the Gophers to sixth place in the league, three points ahead of last-place Michigan State. It’s the first time Minnesota has been swept at home since St. Cloud State beat them Nov. 27 and Nov. 29, 2015.

3. A B1G paradigm shift.

More than anything, the weekend’s results were a lesson in how quickly things can change when each game is worth three points. No one expected Michigan to sweep Minnesota — except, perhaps, for the Wolverines themselves — and those six points among the bottom six teams of the conference created a huge shift in dynamics.

Notre Dame still sits atop of the league standings with 36 points, undefeated in Big Ten play. There are now only two other teams in the league with winning conference records. Second-place Ohio State (8-5-1-0) has 25 points, followed by third-place Penn State (6-5-3-2) with 23 points. Fourth-place Michigan (5-7-2-1) has 18 points, followed by Wisconsin (5-7-2-0) with 17, Minnesota (4-9-1-1) with 14 and Michigan State (3-10-1-1) with 11. It is statistically possible but highly unlikely for anyone to catch Notre Dame, given the way Cale Morris and the rest of the Irish are playing.

Going into the weekend, we knew the rest of it was up for grabs — more or less — but few of us thought that someone near the bottom could be vying for home ice in the first round, or that Minnesota would be three points out of last place and fighting for NCAA postseason life, now tied for 15th in the PairWise.

What a weekend.

47 COMMENTS

    • why do you follow her blog?if she is so bad.Just to complain,that’s why.who should she pick?sounds like she is going with the favorites,which is what most writers and bloggers do.

  1. No way!  Paula picked against WMU (reasonable considering the opponent) and for Michigan (unreasonable considering same opponent).  Geez I wish there were more sources to read about the CCHA.

  2. WOW Paula picked U of M….who would have thought. Pretty sure that U of M didn’t even need to make it to the Joe to win the CCHA, I think thats what I get out of these columns 

  3. “Undefined magic”=the fact that we send more fans, students, and alumni there more than any other school.

    24 straight trips to the Joe, and we don’t lose at Yost East.  GO BLUE!

    • ‘the fact that we send more fans, students, and alumni there more than any other school.’ 
      The fact that you can combine ND, LSSU, Alaska, FSU, and NMU just to reach Michigan’s enrollment has nothing to do with that, of course. 

      Good thing UM and MSU have such travel headaches getting to the Joe as well. Sometimes, traffic can make it a 1:15 minute drive from AA. 

    • Haha that’s funny. WMU fans outnumbered U of M at last season’s semi-final game by more than 2 to 1. I’m not talking about the any of the neutral crowd that may have been cheering for WMU either. This was actual brown and gold clad students and alumni, because unlike U of M our fans actual attended the university.

      • WOW,check out the attendence for the semi final game between miami and western.I see more maize in the crowd and empty seats.Do your fans only show up for the finals?

        • Interesting, the game I was at had at least 6 sections completely full of WMU fans yet U of M would have been lucky to fill 2 sections if you gathered up their sparsely scattered support and put them together.

          Also I would like to send out a kudos to the WMU athletic department for recognizing the need for reserving a party room for WMU in the Olympia Club to be able to accommodate all the fans. It was a great time down there before the game.

          • Your including all the maize that was present for the miami/wmu game.Sure was a bunch of it.Overall the attendence sucked when you compare it to the wcha and hockey east.Saturday should be better.

    • Yo GC,don’t waste your time.Miami and wmu fans are always right.I was at the Joe last year and the 2 to 1 fans ratio,it’s all the other schools cheering against Michigan.They won’t admit it,but it’s true.When you win and have as much success that Michigan has,your going to have haters.And everyone knows MICHIGAN and Michigan State are the 2 biggest and 2 best in the state,IN ALL WAYS,not just sports.GO BLUE!

  4. Paula picking Michigan again? What a shocker. Why even bother re-writing these each year? Just change the dateline and re-post every single one you’ve written for the Joe.

  5. If a Miami player doesn’t win the award,he got robbed.That’s the story(always).Did the Miami coach(not sure how to spell his name)get robbed for not winning coach of the year in the ccha?Keep up your campaign maiami fans,it might help in the future.Way tooooooooooooooo much whinning>

    • Oh, you mean the Miami player that led the entire league in scoring? Or maybe the same Miami player who, head-to-head against the crowned POTY, led his team to a 4-0 record and notched 2 G and 4 A in those four games. 

      But you’re completely right. It’s sheer whining. :eye roll:

      • Smith as player of the year?Knapp goalie of the year?Any defensive players that should get an award?I wanted to contact the ncaa and let them know what they are doing wrong.It’s pretty clear,if miami doesn’t get the award nobody should.GO BLUE! 

        • Lol Smith was second in the nation in goals, and leading the nation in GWG. Krug on the other hand, is good, but may I remind you…he was -3, with 1 G over the weekend. Smith on the other hand…4 A, 1G. 

          Yeah…Krug totally dominates. And Knapp was goalie of the year…so no need to contact the NCAA about that one.

  6. Last year Michigan didn’t take the broncos seriously and they lost 5-2. I can only hope Miami does the same. Much as I’d like to see BG do well, I don’t want to see them get the AQ bid since that would likely boot WMU or MSU from the tourney. (I don’t see Northern making it either way, sorry.)

    GO BRONCOS!!!

    • WMU blows by miami, and Michigan squeaks by Bowling Green. Not to discredit Bowling green at all, but the final might be a more interesting game than you think.  

      • It might be interesting, but I doubt it will be better. 2 OT’s is a heck of a game. BG and Michigan are both going to be tired today though. 3 MAC schools and one Big Ten school in the CCHA Finals with 2 Big Ten schools not making it. Maybe the MAC needs to start their own hockey conference?

  7. Congrats to Western, heck of a game.  And oh how I love to see Miami eat crow.  Looking forward to a great final tomorrow!

  8. The Broncos had their lineup ready tonight…once again as I suggested ..containing Smith was the key…just what ..one goal…too many WMU players can score..I expect a closer game tomorrow…probably within a goal or two.. but getting that Miami monkey/redhawk off their back must feel awfullly good going into the game on Saturday…

    Go Broncos..time to clinch the CCHA and get ready for the tournament

  9. Please send out a all police bulletin.MIAMIU2010 is missing.He is probably in hiding,but please let’s find him.OHIO TEAMS,DONE.

  10. Why is it taking you so long to acknowledge Western Michigan’s impressive postseason run Paula? I’m sure if Michigan had won, you would’ve written a lengthy blog entry by now.

  11. Always has seemed like a strange scenario to me whether it is hock
    ey or basketball that the regular season championship over 15-20 games isn’t worth as much as a 4 or 5 game tournament.

      • Six BiG teams are in the Top 20 in the current Pairwise too. But you’re entitled to your opinion (biased and misguided as it may be).

        • Only thing that matters is probably top 14 in pairwise. Poll is worthless. Atlantic hockey will more than likely only get 1 team in, as their highest pairwise ranked team is in 28th. WCHA gets 1 in, possibly 2, Kato is in a good spot for at large, and have to believe they’ll win the conference tourney, but BG could snag the auto bid. So it doesn’t matter that 6 from the chump 7 are in the top 20…..as of now, two of those, if not three, wouldn’t be making the tourney. But if you want to go for the slow clap on having the 20th pairwise position, you go girl.

          • All I am saying is that there are 60 Div. 1 teams and 6 of the 7 B1G teams are currently in the Top 20. That is a marked improvement over their performance in the past.

          • So … as a realist … would you agree that although the NCHC is arguably the dominant league, the B1G is performing better as a whole than it has in recent years?

          • It’s obvious, but by this time of year, it is time to really start looking at the cutoff line for making the tourney.

  12. I have been surfing online more than thre hour today, yet I never
    found any interesting article likee yours. It’s
    pretty worth enough for me. Personally, if all website owners and bloggers made good content as you did,
    the net will be much more useful than ever before.|
    I could not resist commenting. Exceptionally wedll written!|
    I’ll right away take hold off your rss feed as
    I can’t in finding your e-mail subscription hyperlink or
    e-newsletter service. Do you have any? Kindly permit
    me realize in order that I could subscribe.
    Thanks.|
    It’s appropriate time too make soome plans for thhe future and
    it’s time to be happy. I have read this post and if I could I dessire too suggest you some interesting things or advice.
    Perhaps youu could write next articles referring to this
    article. I desire to read mkre things about it!|
    It is perfect time to make a few plans for the long run and it is time too be happy.

    I’ve read this submit and if I may I desire to counsel you few attention-grabbing things or tips.
    Maybe you can write next articles regarding this
    article. I desire to learn more things about it!|
    I’ve been browsing on-line greater than three hours lately, but I never discovered any interesting article like
    yours. It’s beautiful value sufficient for me. In my view, if all ste owners and bloggers made good content
    aas you probably did, the interbet will bbe a lot more useful than ever before.|
    Ahaa, its nice conversation concerning this post here at thhis blog, I have read
    all that, so now me also commenting at this place.|
    I aam sure this post has touched all the intenet
    people, its really really good article on building up new blog.|
    Wow, this paragraph is nice, my younger
    sister is analyzing these things, thus I am going
    to tell her.|
    bookmarked!!, I love your site!|
    Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you writing this write-up and the rest of the skte is extremely
    good.|
    Hi, I do think this is an excellent website. I stumbledupon itt
    ;) I amm going to return yet again since i have bookmarked it.
    Money and freedom is the greatest way to change, may yyou be
    rich and continue to guide others.|
    Woah! I’m really loving the template/theme of this blog.
    It’s simple, yett effective. A lot of times it’s challenging to get that “perfect balance” between user friendliness and visual appeal.
    I must say you’ve done a great job with this. In addition,
    the blog loads extremely quick for mee on Chrome.
    Exceptional Blog!|
    These are really great ideas inn regarding blogging.
    You have touched some good things here. Any way keep up wrinting.|
    I like what you guys are usually up too. Such clever work and exposure!
    Keepp up the great works guys I’ve included you guys to blogroll.|
    Hello! Someone in my Myspace group shared this site with us so I came to check it
    out. I’m definitely enjoying the information. I’m book-marking and will be tweeting this
    to my followers! Excellent blog and terrific design and
    style.|
    I enjoy what you guys tend to be up too. This sort of clever work andd reporting!
    Keep up the very good works guys I’ve inclured you guys to my blogroll.|
    Hello would you mind stating which blog platform you’re using?
    I’m looking to start my own blog soon but I’m having a touygh time making a
    decision between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal.
    The reason I ask is because your design seems different then most blogs and I’m looking forr something completely
    unique. P.S My apologies for getting off-topic but I had too ask!|
    Hi there would you mind letting me know which hosting company you’re utilizing?
    I’ve loaded yyour blog in 3 different browsers and I must ssay his blog loads a lot faster then most.
    Can you recommend a good hosting provider at a fair price?
    Kudos, I appreciate it!|
    I like it when people get together and share views. Great website, keep
    it up!|
    Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It in fact was a amuswement account it.

    Look advanced to far addded agreeable fom you! However, how could
    we communicate?|
    Hello just wanted to give you a quuck heads up. The text
    in youur article seem to be running off the screen in Internet explorer.
    I’m not sur if this is a format isaue or something to do with internet browser compatibility but I figured I’d post
    to let you know. The design and styyle look great though!
    Hope you get thee issue resolved soon. Kudos|
    This is a topic that’s nea to my heart… Best wishes!
    Where are your contact details though?|
    It’s very straightforward to find out any topic on web
    as compared to books, as I found this article at this site.|
    Does your site have a contact page? I’m having trouble locating it but,
    I’d like to shoot you aan email. I’ve got some recommendations forr your
    blog you might be interested in hearing. Either way, great site and I look forward to seeing it expand over time.|
    Hey there! I’ve been reading your site for a while now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from
    Kingwood Texas! Just wanted to mention keep up the excellent job!|
    Greetyings from Ohio! I’m bored to death at work so I decided
    to browse your site on mmy iphone during lunch break. I love the knowledge you provide here and can’t waot to take a look when I
    get home. I’m shocked at how quick your blog loaded on my mobile ..
    I’m not evcen using WIFI, just 3G .. Anyhow, suuperb blog!|
    Its like you learn my mind!You seem to understand a lott approximately this, such as yoou wrote the gude
    in it or something. I believe that you can doo with a few p.c.
    to force the message house a bit, but instead of that, that is fantastic blog.
    An excellent read. I’ll definitely be back.|
    I visited various sites however the audio quality for audio songs existing
    at this website is in fact marvelous.|
    Howdy, i read your blog from time to time andd i own a simiar one
    and i was just curious if you get a lot of spam comments?
    If so how ddo you prevent it, aany plugin or anything you can suggest?
    I geet soo much lately it’s driving mme crazy so
    any assistance is very much appreciated.|
    Greetings! Very helpful advice in this particular post!
    It is thhe little changes which will make the moat important changes.
    Many thanks for sharing!|
    I absolutely love your website.. Pleasant colors & theme.
    Did you make this website yourself? Please reply bak as I’m planning to create my very own blog and want to find
    out where you got this from or exactly what the theme is named.

    Many thanks!|
    Hello there! This article couldn’t be written any better!

    Looking at this article reeminds me of my previous roommate!
    He constantly kept preaching about this. I am going to forward thos
    post to him. Fairly certain he’s going to have a grreat read.

    Many thanks ffor sharing!|
    Wow! This blog loos exactly like my old one!

    It’s on a entirepy different topic but iit has pretty much the same page layout and design. Wonderful choice of colors!|
    There is definately a great deal to learn about this topic.
    I like all the ppoints you have made.|
    You mad some decent points there. I checked on the internet to
    find out more about the issue and found most individuals will go along with your
    views on this site.|
    Hi there, I check your new stuff daily. Your humoristic style is awesome,
    keep it up!|
    I simply could not go away your web site before suggesting that I
    really enjoyed thhe usal information a person provode for your visitors?

    Is gonna be back often too check out new posts|
    I want to tto thank you for this wonderful read!! I definitely enjoyed every little
    bit of it. I have you saved as a favorite to look at new stuff you
    post…|
    Hello, just wanted to mention, I liked this article.
    It was helpful. Keeep on posting!|
    Hello, I enjoy readkng through your post. I wanted to write a
    litgle comment to support you.|
    I every time spent my half an hour to read this webpage’s articles or reviews every day along
    wkth a cup of coffee.|
    I all the time emailed this webpage post page to all my friends, for the reason that
    if like to read it then my links will too.|
    My coder is trying to cobvince me to move to .net from PHP.
    I have always disliked the idea bedause of the costs.
    But he’s tryiong none tthe less. I’ve been using Movable-type on several websites for aboutt a
    year and am concerned about switching tto another platform.
    I have heard good thing about blogengine.net. Is there a way
    I can trajsfer all my wordpress posts into it? Any help
    would be really appreciated!|
    Howdy! I could have sworn I’ve visited your blog before but after browsing through many
    of the articles I realized it’s new to me. Anyhow, I’m certainly happy I stumbled upon it annd I’ll be bookmarking
    it and checking back regularly!|
    Wonderful article! That is the kind of information that are meant
    to be shared across the web. Shame on the seek engines for nott
    positioning this publish upper! Come oon over annd see advice from my web site .
    Thanks =)|
    Heya i’m for the first time here.I found this board and I fiund It really useful & it helped me
    out much. I hope to give something back annd aid others like you helped me.|
    Greetings, I do think your website may be having browser compatibility
    problems. Wheneever I look at your web site in Safari, it loooks fine however,
    if opening in IE, it has some overlapping issues.
    I merely wanted to give you a quick heads up! Aside from
    that,excellent blog!|
    Somebody essentially assist to make significantly articles I might state.

    That is the first time I frequented your website page and up too now?
    I amazed with the research you made to make this actual post incredible.
    Magnificent process!|
    Heeya i am for the primary time here. I came across this
    board and I to find It truly useful & it helped me out a lot.
    I am hoping to present one thing back and help
    oyhers like you helped me.|
    Howdy! I simply want too give you a huge thumbs up for your great information you’ve
    got right here on this post. I will be returning tto your web site for more soon.|
    I every timme used to read post in news papers but now as I am a user of internet
    thus from now I aam using net for articles or reviews, thanks tto web.|
    Your way of describing all in this piece oof writing is really pleasant, every one can effortlessly know it, Thanks a lot.|
    Hi there, I found our website by the usse of Google
    at the same time as searching for a similar topic, your website came up, it seems to be good.
    I have bookmarked it iin my google bookmarks.
    Hi there, just became alert to your weblog via Google,
    and found that it’s tfuly informative. I’m gooing to watch oout for brussels.
    I will appreciate shpuld you roceed this in future.
    A lot of folks will prbably be benefited from your writing.
    Cheers!|
    I amm curious tto find out what blog platform you have been utilizing?
    I’mexperiencing some minor security problems
    with my latest site and I’d like to find something mote safe.

    Do you have any suggestions?|
    I am extremely impressed with your writing skills as well as with
    the layout onn your weblog. Is this a paid theme or did you customize it yourself?
    Anyway keep up the excellent quality writing, it’s rare to
    see a great blog like this onne these days.|
    I am really inspired with your writing talents as neatly ass with the layout for yohr weblog.

    Is this a paid subject or did you customize it yoyr self?
    Anyway stay up the nice quality writing, it is rare to
    look a nice weblog like this one tese days..|
    Hi, Neat post. There’s a problem with our website in internet explorer,
    may cbeck this? IE stipl is thhe marketplace leader and a large section of people
    will omit your wonderful writing due to this problem.|
    I’m not sure where you are getting your info, but great topic.
    I needs to spend somme time learnkng more or understanding more.
    Thanks forr fantastic information I was looking
    forr this info for my mission.|
    Hi, i think that i saw you visited my web site so
    i came to “return the favor”.I’mtrying to find things to improve my web site!I suppose its ook to use some oof your \

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here