No changes in relative standings as everyone split. Minnesota earned a road split against fellow contender Penn State while Michigan and Michigan State salvaged splits against the bottom of the B1G. UNO was swept on the road at St. Cloud State, dropping to 8th in the PairWise. Minnesota rose to 11th thanks to more teams ahead losing. Michigan will likely need to win the B1G tournament to make the NCAAs as they've dropped all of the way to 20th and don't play anyone ahead of them the rest of the way.
Minnesota @ Penn State
Penn State started quickly on Friday, jumping out to a 1-0 lead after 1. Minnesota was able to pot two goals in a two and half minute stretch of the second period. Minnesota out shot Penn State 12-6 in the second to take control of the game. Minnesota held off Penn State in the third to win 2-1. Penn State had another fast start on Saturday jumping out to a 2-0 lead after 1. Penn State carried a 3-2 lead into the third and nearly survived Minnesota's onslaught. The Gophers pulled Adam Wilcox and scored the tying goal with 38 seconds left. Luke Juha scored a long goal through traffic to win it in OT. Unfortunately for the Gophers, there are no points for an OT loss in B1G play. Penn State fought hard for the split, blocking 17 shots to Minnesota's 5. Luckily for Minnesota, Bowling Green and Providence losses kept Minnesota in the 11th spot in the pairwise. If the Gophers had won or tied on Saturday, they would have been in 9th after the weekend.
Michigan vs Ohio State
Michigan scored first on Friday, but Ohio State took a 2-1 lead into the first intermission after a pair of Matt Johnson Goals. Michigan got the equalizer 5 minutes into the second but
Penn State Ohio State reclaimed the lead 2 minutes later. Ohio State extended its lead with 2 minutes to go. Michigan wouldn't go quietly as the scored with the goalie pulled 30 seconds later. An Ohio State empty net goal sealed the 5-3 victory for the Buckeyes. Michigan responded with a 5-2 victory at home on Sunday, scoring the first 4 goals. Michigan's victory brought them back into a tie for first place with Minnesota.
Michigan State @ Wisconsin
Joe Rumpel was outstanding Friday night saving 32 of 33 to lead Wisconsin to a 2-1 win. Hildebrand had a rare off night, giving up 2 on 18. Rumpel was able to stop 30 of 33 on Saturday, but Hildebrand bounced back with a 31 save shutout. Wisconsin was able to notch its first conference win at home and Michigan State kept pace with Minnesota and Penn State. Michigan State had a golden opportunity to move up in the standings this weekend but couldn't capitalize. The three points on Friday may come back to haunt the Spartans.
UNO @ St. Cloud State
UNO was swept by St. Cloud State, losing 4-3 on Friday and 2-0 on Saturday. UNO dropped to 8th in the PairWise and into a tie for 3rd in the NCHC (6pts behind NoDak) while St. Cloud rocketed up to 14th.
An overtime loss counts as a loss and no points are earned. If both teams are tied after the five minute OT period, the game goes down as a tie and both teams earn a point. A shootout follows a tie with the winner earning a second point. A shootout "win" counts as a tie, not a win in the standings and for NCAA Tournament seeding purposes. Total wins are used as the primary tie-breaker. If teams have the same number of wins, head to head record is used.
KRACH Ratings, KRACH Rank, Pairwise Rank
Update on 2/22/2015 @ 8 PM CST
There are 59 teams in college hockey. The pairwise is an approximation of the selection process for the NCAA tournament (click link for explanation). The top 16 teams are selected for the tourney. Conference tournament champions get auto-bids so teams rated near 16 can be displaced if a lower ranked team wins it's conference tournament.
Points, Elimination numbers, KRACH Projections, and Last Years Points
Change in expected conference wins:
Pts earned by team on the left are shown in the boxes
Green boxes mean that the team in the row is ahead of the team in the column. Red means the team in the column is ahead. Blue means the teams have split points. Once a season series is completed, the color will be darker, the points will be bold, and the box will have a thicker border. Column on the right shows the points gained by a team. Row on the bottom shows the points lost by a team.
KRACH Projection Review
Let's see how the projections went this week:
|Team||KRACH Projection||My Prediction||Actual||Updated KRACH|
My predictions weren't great this week but the KRACH projections have really stabilized. I should have gone with my head instead of my heart with regards to Minnesota and called the split. We have three weeks left so don't look for KRACH to change an awful lot the rest of the way.
I started another table to see what the expected current points earned should be according to KRACH.
MSU has really outperformed its KRACH rating thanks in large part to Jake Hildebrand. I would expect points to regress to expectation over the final 3 weeks but small samples sizes don't guarantee anything.
Here are the average remaining opponent KRACH ratings for each team and remaining home/away games:
|Team||Avg Opp KRACH||Home||Away|
Minnesota has the easiest schedule remaining and 4 of those 6 are at home. I like for them to defend their B1G crown but they may have to share it this year.