Saturday in the WCHA

Two teams not yet guaranteed a spot in the NCAA tournament will play for a guaranteed spot at 7:07 p.m. Saturday at St. Paul’s Xcel Energy Center (FS North) in the WCHA Final Five championship game.

Giant killer Colorado College (18-18-5) faces on-rushing Wisconsin (21-12-7) for the Broadmoor Trophy. CC has won four straight games in knocking off No. 10 Denver, No. 6 North Dakota and No. 2 Minnesota. Wisconsin has won five straight games (allowing just seven goals total).

In the PairWise Rankings, Wisconsin in No. 17 and CC No. 25. Minnesota, North Dakota, Denver and likely Minnesota State-Mankato are expected to be in the field of 16 announced Sunday. St. Cloud State should also get in, but is far from assured.

The PairWise Rankings are here.

Shane Frederick of the Mankato Free Press talks about what’s on the line today for the NCAA tournament hopefuls from the WCHA in a story here.

NCAA Bracketology and implications of Division I games are laid out by U.S. College Hockey Online here and College Hockey News here.

In Friday’s WCHA Final Five semifinals:

Wisconsin scored twice in the third period to secure a 4-1 victory over regular-season co-champion St. Cloud State. In the final period, Nic Kerdiles scored on a power play with 9:31 to play and Tyler Barnes added an empty-net goal with 71 seconds left. Joel Rumpel (15-8-4) had 30 saves. St. Cloud State led in shots 31-21. Wisconsin had two PP goals. Attendance 16,555. From the St. Cloud Times here and Wisconsin State Journal here.

Colorado College scored goals less than four minutes apart early in the second period to secure a 2-0 win over Minnesota. Rylan Schwartz (19) scored 59 seconds into the period and Charlie Taft followed at 4:24. Minnesota led in shots 35-20. Joe Howe made 35 saves for CC for the win. The attendance announced was a sellout of 18,949. Minnesota’s five-game win streak was broken. From the St. Paul Pioneer Press here, Minneapolis Star Tribune here and Colorado Springs Gazette here.

A U.S. College Hockey Online photo gallery from Friday’s semifinals is here.

Summaries Courtesy of College Hockey Stats.net

Wisconsin          4 vs St. Cloud State    1  Box   
Colorado College   2 vs Minnesota          0  Box

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