Tuesday, February 14, 2012

WCHA Race Getting Closer Every Weekend

Three Teams Currently In Line for Conference Title

Muddy the waters. Who’s on first? Insert a Yogi Berra-ism here that would confuse us all.

Tops in the WCHA, let alone college hockey, will be as interesting as ever this year.

UMD worked new magic to pull out a sweep winning Saturday by keeping a surging North Dakota team at bay just long enough to let the final horn sound. A win is a win, and yes UND, a loss is a loss. It is too late in the season to read so many UND people, media included, talk about how close their team was to a win. Three weekends left in the regular season, there are no moral victories.

That is why the Bulldog’s win is so important; it counts as a win and two points in the standings. During Friday’s UMD loss, media members around the league were looking at a five point Gopher lead in the conference after the night assuming the Gophers held their lead at Denver. They didn’t hold a lead Friday or Saturday, so we are looking at the Top three of the WCHA separated by three points.

Enter the newest chapter of the race to MacNaughton, or at least the coveted top two spots, the upcoming WCHA weekend. Week to week, this is an ever changing story of who will take the WCHA and how many teams from the conference will make the NCAA Tournament.

Up Next, MSUM. UMD travels to Mankato to take on the Purple Mavericks fresh off a trip to Anchorage. Similar situation to UMD’s last weekend, but the Bulldogs didn’t get a sweep at UAA like MSUM did. Yeah, crazy season.

UMD cannot let points go by the wayside any longer. The 4-4-1 record since the 17 unbeaten streak has to go North with a sweep this weekend. If not, there’s no telling where this Bulldogs team may end up in the wild WCHA.

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