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Sunday, February 22, 2009

Playoff Possibilities

The Mount has put itself in a great position to earn at least two home playoff games in the NEC Tournament. All it has to do is win on the road at league leader Robert Morris to guarantee that. No easy task indeed.

If the Mount fails in that respect, it could end up in a tie for second with either Sacred Heart or Long Island or both. Both SHU and LIU have just six league losses, the Mount has five. So if the Mount takes care of business it wins the #2 seed. I don't think the #1 is a true possibility, although a tie with RMU is possible if the Colonials fall to St. Francis of PA on Thursday and then lose to the Mount Saturday afternoon. But I think the tiebreakers would goto RMU.

So looking at the possibility of a tie with the other two. Sacred Heart has just one more game, against SFNY on Thursday. Long Island plays at FDU and then St. Francis NY on Saturday. If either of those teams lose they can't tie the Mount, regardless of the Mount outcome at Corrapolis.

But let's say they end up in a three way tie. At that point they all have 2-2 records against each other and would move to the next tiebreaker. That is win % against Robert Morris. None of those teams has beaten RMU so, it would move down the standings. Quinnipiac is the current 5th place team. QU has two wins over LIU so LIU would be eliminated in the three-way playoff and be the fourth seed. SHU has split with Quinnipiac so that would give the Mount the #2 seed and place SHU third.

However, if Quinnipiac doesn't finish ahead of Central - and that is still a possibility as QU leads Central by just a game and they play on Saturday. Long Island is 1-0 against Central and Sacred Heart is 2-0 against Central. So that would conceivably place the Mount fourth, and SHU 2nd and Long Island 3rd.

So what happens if QU and Central end up tied - and there is a three-way tie ahead of them, you ask? Great question. Here goes how I think the answer would be reached. The Mount is 3-1 versus CCSU & QU, SHU is 3-1 versus CCSU and QU, and LIU is 1-2. So, LIU would be the fourth seed and the Mount and SHU would wrestle over the second seed by moving to the seventh place team which is currently St. Francis NY and both teams have swept the Terriers. Wagner is currently next in the pecking order and SHU would own that advantage as they are 1-0 versus the Seahawks this year.

So basically, the Mount can make things a lot easier on themselves by winning on Saturday. Although by my calculations a win by QU in either of its final two home games versus Wagner or Central should be enough. But don't hold me to it.

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