Preview: Miami at Minnesota-Duluth
WHO: Miami RedHawks (15-16-3) at Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs (15-14-5).
WHAT: NCHC best-of-3 quarterfinal series.
WHERE: Amsoil Arena, Duluth, Minn.
WHEN: Friday–8:07 p.m.; Saturday–8:07 p.m.; Sunday–8:07 p.m. (if necessary)
MIAMI RADIO: All three nights–WMOH-AM (1450), Hamilton, Ohio; WKBV-AM (1490), Richmond, Ind.
MINNESOTA-DULUTH RADIO: All three nights–WWAX-FM (92.1), Duluth, Minn.; KQDS-FM (95.5), Grand Rapids, Minn.; WJJY-FM (106.7), Brainerd, Minn.; WXCX-FM (105.7), Pine City, Minn.
NOTES: Miami was swept in Duluth last weekend, and the RedHawks return to UMD with their season on the line.
Miami is 0-3-1 vs. Minnesota-Duluth and has scored just four goals against Kasimir Kaskisuo and the Bulldogs this season.
And that has been the MO for UMD – it has allowed just 68 goals in 34 goals for a 2.00 average, with Kaskisuo posting a 1.86 goals-against average and .926 save percentage.
Only two Bulldogs have reached the 20-point mark, with just Tony Camenaresi over 30 (9-22-31). Austin Farley has 13 goals and 14 assists for 27 points, including eight of UMD’s 20 power play tallies.
Tied for 22nd in the PairWise rankings and a game under .500, the axiom of the year is that Miami needs to win this series to have a shot at an NCAA Tournament berth, and the RedHawks probably need to win the NCHC Tournament to earn a spot among the national field.
Miami has yet to win against Minnesota-Duluth this season, finishing the regular season 0-3-1 vs. the Bulldogs, and the RedHawks were swept in Duluth last weekend, getting outscored, 8-1.
It doesn’t look good for MU, but consider that the RedHawks are 7-2 all-time in the NCHC Tournament and 4-1 in this round including 2-0 on the road.
Miami has won this round both seasons of the NCHC’s existence to advance to the Frozen Faceoff in Minneapolis.
The RedHawks also have not lost a best-of-3 series since 2009 when Northern Michigan rallied to win Games 2 and 3 at Cady Arena after losing the series opener.