Monday, November 28, 2011

WCHA: Who's on First?

Mixed Results Keeps Us Wondering Who Is Tops?

Does anyone want the MacNaughton Cup? Parody might be the word of the season for the WCHA.

After a weekend of the haves getting beat and the have-nots winning, the middle and lower end of the conference keeps moving up creating more of a log jam at the top of the WCHA.

The facts are that it is early in the year and not all of the teams have played equal games, but we are at the end of November and the next games will start the December part of the schedule, real hockey time. There is no more saying, “Yeah, but it is still early…”

Right now in the conference standings the difference between first and seventh is six points. The biggest jam-up is in the middle where 4th through 10th is separated by four points.

And it’s not just conference games that are perplexing. The perennially non-conference dominant WCHA is showing weakness in games around the country.

This past weekend:

  • Minnesota – Twin Cities, once thought to be unbeatable with their goalie alone, surrendered 8 goals in a loss and tie at Michigan State (4-3 and 4-4),
  • Denver “split,” beating Princeton 3-0 then losing to Miami 4-2 both at home,
  • Michigan Tech continues their up and down road season by losing to St. Lawrence 3-2 before beating them 3-1,
  • North Dakota may have turned their season on high by sweeping our pre-season league favorite Colorado College (PS, who is going to be the Tiger’s goalie?) and
  • Saint Cloud State keeps plugging away and not going away by getting points here and there. This past weekend they stuck with Nebraska – Omaha to take a point with a Sunday tie on the road.
The early season is over as we look towards December, and right now, it looks like no team is going to run away with the thing. We will just have to keep on watching to see how the parody of the WCHA will play out.

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