Well, ladies and gentlemen, we've hit the final hours of the D1 Icers. Within the next 30 hours, we'll know the final result of the last ACHA season for this impressive club ice hockey program. WIth no consolation game, the Icers know they can finish no worse than 3rd overall. However, at this point, the team won't be happy with anything less than one final Murdoch Cup to add to the trophy case.
Up first for the Icers are the #13 Oakland Grizzlies, who have made an outstanding run in this tournament. After easily dispatching their play-in game opponent, #20 Mercyhurst, the Grizzlies have been in full upset-mode. First up was one of the top teams in the ACHA this season, #4 Arizona State. The Sun Devils jumped out to an early 2-0 lead, but Oakland countered with two goals in the second period. A scoreless third period sent the two teams to overtime, where a fortunate bounce landed on the stick of one of the Grizzlies forwards, which set up the game-winning goal in OT. But there was no rest for this Oakland team, as they had to face GLCHL rival #12 Adrian College (who pulled off their own impressive upset over #5 Liberty) the next day. Still, the third game in three days did not seem to phase Oakland. It was a back-and-forth affair that included many goals and lots of hitting. The Grizzlies eventually went up 5-2, before letting Adrian start to make their comeback. Time was on Oakland's side, as they would hold on to win 5-4.
Today's games will be the #1 Penn State vs. #13 Oakland game at 5:00pm, then the #2 Lindenwood Lions vs. #3 Delaware Blue Hens following the first game (scheduled start time is 8:00pm). I'll update the post once the games are finished, and as always, I'll be doing my live commenting/updating below. If you wish to follow along, the game(s) are still being streamed for free at FastHockey.com.
*Programming Note* Well, the Icers lost, 5-3. I'll write up that recap in a day or so. Until then, I'm done. It's been a fun ride in the ACHA, but I somehow have lost a lot of desire to watch any more games for the tournament. (In its replacement, my desire to imbibe some adult beverages has gone up.) Next time we see this team, they'll be in the NCAA!