No. 5-ranked North Dakota will be without forward Matt Frattin for Thursday’s WCHA Final Five play-in game versus No. 11 Minnesota Duluth at Xcel Energy Center. Frattin was suspended by the WCHA on Monday for one game for a hit on Minnesota defenseman Kevin Wehrs on Sunday night in Grand Forks, N.D. Wehrs suffered a concussion.
Brad Elliott Schlossman of the Grand Forks Herald has a story here. Schlossman notes that: Frattin was called for a five-minute, contact to the head charging major at the time — a call disputed by both benches. North Dakota’s coaching staff argued against it, while Minnesota’s coaching staff wanted Frattin thrown out of the game. Referees Derek Shepherd and Marco Hunt called the major but allowed Frattin to stay in the game. He later scored a goal.
The Frattin-Wehrs video on You Tube is here.
And if you’ve been ignoring the PairWise Rankings until the college hockey season got down to serious playoff business, we are now there. U.S. College Hockey Online and College Hockey News have Pairwise Predictors on their Web sties where fans can factor in any playoff possibility on the final conference post-season weekend and see how it would affect their team.
The PairWise Rankings are here.
North Dakota, like fellow WCHA members — No. 1 Denver, No. 3 Wisconsin and No. 6 St. Cloud State will be in the NCAA tournament. UMD is on the bubble at No. 11. Here’s a quick analysis on UMD from College Hockey News:
11. If Duluth loses the Thursday play-in game at the Final Five, it’s in immediate trouble. It automatically loses the comparison to both Alaska and Northern Michigan at that point. And it loses the comparison to New Hampshire. In fact, winning the play-in then losing the next two, has the same effect. Thus, the only way for UMD to make the NCAAs is to win the Thursday game, and then win one of the next two against a field that includes four of the top six teams in the nation. A tall order, but obviously do-able, since UMD won the Broadmoor Trophy from this spot a year ago.
It’s very all-or-nothing, since going 2-1 at least will get UMD a pretty good seed, maybe a matchup with Bemidji State (since it can’t play SCSU or North Dakota). A loss, and the Bulldogs plummet.