Monday, February 21, 2011

What We Know

Men

There are two games left in the regular season, with the exception of Harvard and Brown, who play each other on Tuesday, they have three games left.

Union (33 points) and Yale (32 points) have secured first round byes. They will finish in the top two positions in the league. The tiebreaker is uncertain (each team won one game against the other) unless they tie with Union earning three points and Yale earning four points OR Union ties twice and Yale earns three points, in which case Yale would win the tiebreaker (total ECAC wins). Besides those two scenarios, a tie would go to the third tiebreaker, records against the top four teams, which in this case is record against each other plus whoever ends up in third and fourth.

Dartmouth, Cornell, RPI, and Princeton have secured at least home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs. They will finish in positions three through six in some order.

Tiebreakers:
DRT/COR: Cornell won the head-to-head, 3-1.
DRT/RPI: RPI won the head-to-head, 4-0.
DRT/PRN: Dartmouth won the head-to-head, 4-0.
COR/RPI: Cornell won the head-to-head, 4-0.
COR/PRN: Would currently be solved on third tie-breaker, and would depend on which teams are in the top four.
RPI/PRN: Depends on the outcome of Friday's game. RPI wins the tiebreaker with a win or a tie. A Princeton win would solve this on the third tie-breaker, depending on which teams are in the top four.

Three-way ties:
DRT/COR/RPI: Cornell, then RPI, then Dartmouth.
DRT/COR/PRN: Cornell, then Dartmouth, then Princeton.
DRT/RPI/PRN: RPI, then Dartmouth, then Princeton (regardless of Friday's game).
COR/RPI/PRN: Cornell, then goes to the RPI/PRN tiebreaker.

Four-way tie: Cornell, then RPI, then Dartmouth, then Princeton (regardless of Friday's game).

Dartmouth and Cornell are tied for third with 24 points each. Cornell wins the head-to-head tiebreaker with the Big Green and currently sit in 3rd place.

RPI is alone in 5th place with 23 points.

Princeton is alone in 6th place with 22 points.

Clarkson and Quinnipiac are tied for seventh with 17 points each. Clarkson wins the 2nd tiebreaker with the Bobcats (total ECAC wins) and currently sit in 7th place. The Golden Knights will finish between 7th and 9th, thanks to their season sweep over St. Lawrence. The Bobcats can finish between 7th and 10th due to St. Lawrence holding tie-breaker over QU.

Brown is alone in 9th with 14 points, and have a game in hand. They could finish anywhere from 7th through 12th. They can guarantee themselves no worse than 10th with a win or tie on Tuesday.

St. Lawrence is alone in 10th place with 13 points. They can still finish as high as 8th for the final home-ice spot, but would need to sweep this weekend AND see Quinnipiac swept AND Brown take no more than two points in their last three games.

Colgate is alone in 11th place with 10 points. They will be on the road for the first round of the playoffs, but can finish as high as 9th.

Harvard is alone in 12th with 9 points. They will also be on the road for the first round of the playoffs and can also finish as high as 9th. However, a loss on Tuesday would allow them to finish no higher than 11th.

Downtable tiebreakers:
CKN/QU: Clarkson wins on 2nd tiebreak.
CKN/BRN: Clarkson wins head-to-head, 4-0.
CKN/SLU: Clarkson wins head-to-head, 4-0.
QU/BRN: Brown wins on 2nd tiebreak.
QU/SLU: St. Lawrence wins head-to-head, 4-0.
BRN/SLU: Brown wins head-to-head, 4-0.
CKN/QU/BRN: Clarkson, then Brown, then Quinnipiac.
QU/BRN/SLU: Brown, then St. Lawrence, then Quinnipiac.
CKN/QU/BRN/SLU: Clarkson, then Brown, then St. Lawrence, then Quinnipiac.

BRN/COL: Would be determined on the 3rd tiebreak depending on who the top 4 teams are, as a tie would require a split head-to-head with the same ECAC record.
BRN/HRV: Would be determined on either the 2nd or 3rd tiebreak, as a tie would require a split head-to-head.
SLU/COL: St. Lawrence wins head-to-head, 4-0.
SLU/HRV: Depends on the result of Saturday's game. Harvard wins the tiebreaker with a win or a tie.
COL/HRV: Would be determined on either the 2nd or 3rd tiebreak due to a head-to-head split.

Given that Harvard still has games against both Brown and St. Lawrence, and Brown has games against Harvard and Colgate, the multiple tiebreak scenarios have too many permutations right now for definite answers. We'll know more on Tuesday night after the Harvard/Brown game is over.

Best case scenarios for RPI: Sweep Princeton/Quinnipiac, Cornell (at Brown/Yale) earns no more than two points on the weekend, Dartmouth does not sweep at home over St. Lawrence/Clarkson, OR Engineers earn 3 points, Cornell earns no more than one point, Dartmouth earns no more than two points, OR Engineers beat Princeton (or tie both games with Princeton losing to Union), Cornell is swept, Dartmouth earns no more than one point.

In these scenarios, Engineers finish in third place and face one of the 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, or 10th seeds in the second round, depending on the results of the first round.

RPI does not control their destiny for the bye. They could sweep the weekend series at home and still finish in 5th if Dartmouth does the same and Cornell takes at least three points.

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