Coming into the weekend, the St. Cloud State Huskies were tied atop of the National Colligate Hockey Conference standings with the North Dakota Fighting Hawks. Both teams sat in first place with 47 points. It looked like the race for the Penrose Cup might go down to the last weekend.
Well, that scenario changed very quickly.
The Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs had other things in mind. The Bulldogs fighting for their playoff lives swept the Huskies and put a damper on their title hopes.
Dear North Dakota,
You’re welcome. Again.
— Bruce Ciskie (@BruceCiskie) February 28, 2016
In a nutshell, the University of North Dakota would have to be swept by the Western Michigan Broncos. That’s also a scenario that doesn’t seem very likely. The Western has won a grand total of eight games all season long. They’re sitting in seventh place of the NCHC standings.
Here’s what needs to happen for the Huskies to clinch a share of the Penrose Cup: First, the Huskies would have to sweep the Colorado College Tigers. That’s a very likely result, the Tigers are not a good hockey team. Remember, all UND needs to do is secure a single point all weekend long. Then the Penrose Cup belongs to the Hawks.
While it’s possible. It’s not likely to happen.
After the Bulldogs were swept last weekend by the UND, I wrote a blog post and said that the Bulldogs are a better team than their record. This past weekend’s results just prove that I was right. UND fans are thankful it took an extra week to happen. Now, the Bulldogs, if they can win the league tourney, or get to .500 could sneak into the NCAA tourney. Cue the whining from the fans from the teams that reside on the east coast.
One of the themes that emerged from this weekend was the Bulldogs “should” be a much better team than their record. It’s puzzling. Based on the skill of their defense and forward group, they shouldn’t be mired in the middle of the NCHC standings.
That didn’t sit all that well with Bulldog fans. The video doesn’t lie.