As we’ve seen in recent years, one game can be the difference between a regular-season title and second place. This past weekend, that one game could have been played Saturday night.
1. Sweeps are golden. Notre Dame is the CCHA’s new No. 1 team, two points ahead of former first-place Miami because the Fighting Irish swept Michigan State and Miami split with Lake Superior State. Those two points are interesting, too, because the Irish have two games in hand on the RedHawks. Western Michigan was in fifth place heading into the weekend but with six points from a two-game sweep of Ferris State has vaulted to third, two points behind the RedHawks with two games in hand over Miami, too.
2. Sometimes one player makes all the difference. The Irish and Broncos each held their opponents to three goals for the weekend and took six points each as a result. The RedHawks held the Lakers to three goals in two games, too, but took three points instead of six because they couldn’t get one past LSSU junior goaltender Kevin Murdoch, who made 46 saves in the 1-0 win Saturday, the third shutout of his career. Murdoch was thrown into a starting situation when classmate Kevin Kapalka was injured in October. Kapalka is back, but now the Lakers have two capable men in net.
3. Robert Morris owns Ohio State. Well, at least in Columbus. The Colonials beat the Buckeyes, 3-2, in the Schottenstein Center Friday night, a chippy contest in which two game misconducts and a disqualification — to RMU player Brandon Denham — were assessed. Robert Morris is now 3-0 all-time versus Ohio State in Columbus. The teams skated to a 2-2 tie the following night in Pittsburgh.