Sunday, March 4, 2012

CCHA Quarters are set, MSU now 12th in Pairwise

LSSU and Notre Dame swept their respective series this weekend, and Bowling Green repeated history knocking off 6th seeded Northern Michigan for the second straight year in two games. As a result, we will have the following for the CCHA quarterfinals best of 3 series:

#11 Bowling Green at #1 Ferris State
#8 Notre Dame at #2 Michigan
#7 LSSU at #3 Western
#5 Michigan State at #4 Miami

These four series all could be something to see, but the two that could be more interesting than any other will be Notre Dame-Michigan and Michigan State-Miami. The Irish have been playing better over the last few weeks, and Michigan has had some consistency problems this year (just like anyone else). It'll be tough for Notre Dame to win two games, but they should make Michigan work for it.

And of course we have our own series. Health could be an issue for the Spartans if Merrifield isn't 100%. But one thing MSU fans have been able to count on is this team will make the other team work for it. Miami may have swept the season series, but Michigan State was in both games. MSU lost the first game in overtime, and the second game was 1-0 going into the 3rd period before Miami blew it open.

Northern fell to 16th in the Pairwise which will suggest they are out of the NCAA tournament now. Michigan State remained in 12th after this weekend - so it still looks like MSU may need to beat Miami to assure themselves a NCAA tournament bid.

Here is the latest projection through this weekend - MSU a 3 seed out east

If you are a Spartan fan - it is simple.... Win and you are in. It won't be easy this weekend down in Oxford, but if the "hard hat wearing" Spartans show up, it should be a battle, and it is one that MSU can win.

We'll have more throughout the week as we approach the weekend series.

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