An update to yesterday’s #USPHLPlayoffs Watch List:
It’s Saturday, and we have a full slate today with four NCDC, eight USPHL Elite and 23 USPHL Premier games!
Three teams have clinched spots since Thursday: South Shore Kings, Hershey Cubs and the Dells Ducks.
We have a first place lock (Eels) and four teams in the middle fighting for second through fifth.
Third-place Tampa hosts the Florida Jr. Blades (fifth). Second place Atlanta hosts the Infantry.
An Atlanta win keeps them in second. A loss, coupled with a Tampa win, drops them to third. A Jr. Blades win will springboard them into fourth over the idle Palm Beach.
Great Lakes Division
Toledo (first) hosts Columbus (third) and the Jets (second) host Cincinnati (fourth). Toledo needs a three-point swing to lock up the first seed, which could happen today with a Cincinnati upset.
The top five teams can finish no worse than fifth. Hershey and Elmira battle for sixth and seventh.
Three teams are fighting for the eighth and final spot.
Four games today:
A P.A.L. (eighth place) win will eliminate the Jersey Hitmen, and leave P.A.L. to fight with Buffalo (ninth) for the last seat on the bus. Buffalo hosts sixth-place Elmira today.
Utica (No. 4) hosts Connecticut (fifth) and the WBS Knights (second) host the Rockets Hockey Club (third). A Connecticut win would put them in a tie with Utica, who will still have four games in hand.
First through third cannot change today.
Midwest East Division
Ft. Wayne (first) hosts MJDP (second).
The battle for Chicago sees the Cougars (fourth) host the Crush (fifth)
Decatur Blaze (seventh) hosts Battle Creek (sixth)
None of these games will change the standings.
Midwest West Division
Isanti Outlaws (sixth) host the Minnesota Moose (third)
Wisconsin Rapids Riverkings (fourth) host the Hudson Havoc (first).
The Minnesota Squatch (second) host the Minnesota Blue Ox (seventh).
– Hudson can clinch first with a win.
– The Squatch can clinch second with a win and a Moose loss.
– The Moose can clinch third with a win and a Wisconsin Rapids loss.
– A Wisconsin win would put them permanently ahead of Isanti or the Ox if either of them lose.
Provo (fifth) is still vying for fourth place. A loss against Northern Colorado (third) would relegate them to fifth.
New England Division
The Northern Cyclones (first) host the fourth-place Springfield Pics in the only action. The outcome won’t change the standings
Vernal Oilers (first) host the Rock Springs Prospectors (third)
Seattle Totems (second) host Rogue Valley Royals (fourth)
A win by Rock Springs or a loss by Rogue Valley will clinch the third seed for Rock Springs and a playoff trip to Seattle.
Rogue Valley will be left to battle Bellingham (fifth) to visit Vernal in the first round.
We have four teams in and three teams out.
Ontario (fourth) could leapfrog idle Las Vegas (third) with a win over Bakersfield (fifth).
The other games will not affect the standings.
Nashville (fourth) host Carolina (fifth)
Nashville has two games remaining, both this weekend, both vs. Carolina
Nashville can’t fall out of fourth this weekend, but they will be done tomorrow and will sit and wait for Carolina to play their last five games. They have to bank four points this weekend and cheer for Richmond next weekend and Charlotte at the end.
Tampa (second) host the Blades (sixth). Tampa are chasing the idle Eels for first place. The next Eels win or Tampa loss will clinch first for the Eels.
Atlanta (fourth) are chasing idle Palm Beach (third). A win over the Infantry will put them in third by two points, but the Typhoon will have three games in hand.
We have a first place lock (WBS Knights), and four teams in the middle fighting for second through fifth.
The Hitmen (second) host P.A.L. (third) and the results of this game won’t change standings, unless P.A.L. loses and the Rockets (fourth) beat WBS on the road and shift into second.
New England Division
Northern Cyclones (first) host Springfield (fourth).
Junior Bruins (fifth) host Islanders Hockey Club (second)
Both underdogs need a win to postpone elimination. The Cyclones could clinch the No. 1 seed and the Islanders the No. 2seed today.
Four teams are in, and two teams are out. Eight points separate first from fourth.
These four teams all meet at Pineville on March 10. We’re just trying to see who they each play.
A Carolina Jr. Hurricanes (first place) win over Nashville will help them retain first. It would also eliminate Richmond (fourth) from being able to clinch first.
A Potomac (third place) win over Hampton Roads Whalers won’t change their position.
The Rush (second) are idle.