SB Nation’s NCAA Poll: Closing Time
We are at the end of the regular season, some teams will try to close out seeding while others struggle to close out games.
One week remain in the regular season and we have some clarity but this week had a spectacularly head scratching result.
1. Minnesota (24-7-1), 84 (5) — Last poll: T-1
- Last week: W 5-3 @ St. Cloud State (2/11), W 5-1 v St. Cloud State (2/12)
- Coming Week: @ St. Thomas (2/17), v St. Thomas (2/19)/
The Gophers got the help they needed and now control their destiny to win the WCHA regular season. A sweep gets a trophy and sets them up for the top seed in the NCAA tournament.
2. Wisconsin (23-4-4), 80 (2) — Last poll: 3
- Last week: W 5-2 v Minnesota State (2/12), W 7-2 v Minnesota State (2/13)
- Coming Week: @ Ohio State (2/18, 2/19)/
Finally the Badgers got a weekend sweep for the first time this year. Taking out Mankato puts them in the drivers seat for the second seed as they travel to Columbus for a pair.
3. Ohio State (23-6-0), 77 (2) — Last poll: T-1
- Last week: W 6-2 @ St. Cloud State (2/8), L 2-3 @ Bemidji State (2/11), W 8-1 @ Bemidji State (2/12)
- Coming Week: v Wisconsin (2/18, 2/19)/
The elephant in the room is the empty net goal that was the top highlight on ESPN that cost them the game against Bemidji. While the Buckeyes were fighting hard for a regular season trophy they made a critical error in regard to PWR as they now have no wiggle room in their hunt for home ice. Anything less than sweeping the visiting Badgers will hurt.
4. Northeastern (25-4-1), 58 — Last poll: 4
- Last week: W 3-0 v Boston University (2/8), W 8-1 v Maine (2/11), W 2-0 v Maine (2/12)
- Coming Week: @ New Hampshire (2/15), @ Connecticut (2/18), v Connecticut (2/19)/
The Huskies played a very lethargic game against Boston University but their back up goalie held them afloat with a shutout before the coaching staff lit a fire that saw them blowout Maine to be the first team to clinch a regular season title, and become this week’s ‘Belles of the Ball.’ Northeastern is in great shape in the PWR and control their destiny to take home ice if they can take care of business this weekend.
5. Minnesota-Duluth (20-9-0), 57 — Last poll: 5
- Last week: W 2-1 v St. Thomas (2/11), W 8-1 v St. Thomas (2/12)
- Coming Week: @ St. Cloud (2/15), v St. Cloud State (2/18, 2/19)/
Duluth is skating along and will get three games against St. Cloud to wrap the regular season. If the Bulldogs want home ice they will need to make a tournament run.
T-6. Harvard (19-7-0), 37 — Last poll: 6
- Last week: W 5-4 v Boston College (2/8), W 2-0 v Princeton (2/11), L 1-2 v Quinnipiac (2/12)
- Coming Week: v St. Lawrence (2/14), @ Rensselaer (2/18), @ Union (2/19)/
It was a very up and down week for the Crimson as they outlasted Boston College to take the Beanpot before falling against Quinnipiac, a loss which was devastating for their tournament seeding. They now have three games to rebound and try to hold on to at least 2nd in the ECAC.
T-6. Yale (21-5-1), 37 — Last poll: 9
- Last week: W 3-2 v Union (2/8), W 3-1 v Clarkson (2/11), W 3-1 v St. Lawrence (2/12)
- Coming Week: @ Quinnipiac (2/18), @ Princeton (2/19)/
The three wins rocketed Yale to the top of the ECAC title with their destiny in their own hands.It won’t be easy as they have a pair of road games that will test them.
8. Quinnipiac (21-7-3), 31 — Last poll: 8
- Last week: W 7-2 @ Dartmouth (2/11), W 2-1 @ Harvard (2/12)
- Coming Week: @ Rensselaer (2/15), v Yale (2/18), v Brown (2/19)/
It was a hugely successful road trip up north as the Bobcats took the pair. This week sees a make up game against RPI before a pair of Ivies comes to Hamden.
9. Colgate (23-7-1), 20 — Last poll: 7
- Last week: W 8-0 v Union (2/11), W 3-0 v Rensselear (2/12)
- Coming Week: v Cornell (2/15), @ Clarkson (2/18), @ St. Lawrence (2/19)/
The Raiders won the games they were supposed to. They will head to the north country with major seeding implications.
10. Clarkson (22-7-3), 10 — Last poll: 10
- Last week: L 1-3 @ Yale (2/11), W 8-1 @ Brown (2/12)
- Coming Week: v Colgate (2/18), v Cornell (2/19)/
The loss to Yale was less than ideal for the Golden Knights. Clarkson will be fighting off Colgate in the standings to see who might host the following weekend.
Also Receiving Votes: Vermont 2, Connecticut 1, Boston College 1