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NMU women's basketball team GLIAC tournament scenarios
February 25, 2013 - Matt Wellens
x — clinched GLIAC Tournament Spot
& — Ineligible for GLIAC Tournament
MARQUETTE — The Northern Michigan University women’s basketball team is on track to reach the GLIAC tournament for the second year in a row win or lose on Saturday at Michigan Tech, though one technicality does stand in its way.
At 10-11 in the GLIAC, the Wildcats currently hold the eighth and final spot in the tournament. If the season ended today, NMU would play at No. 1 Ashland.
Saginaw Valley State at No. 7 is one game up on NMU at 11-10 in league play and No. 9 Northwood is one game back of NMU at 9-12 in the GLIAC. The Wildcats split with both teams during the regular season, but wins the second tiebreaker — “record versus highest ranked teams in descending order, within the division” — via a win over Michigan Tech.
Based on all of that, the Wildcats would be a lock, however, there is a technicality in the South Division that could keep NMU out of the postseason.
The top three teams from each division reach the GLIAC playoffs, with two more teams from either division receiving at-large bids. Currently, the South’s third-place team, Malone, is ineligible, along with seventh-place Walsh.
If Malone, at 9-12 in league play, hangs on to third place in the South, then another at-large bid becomes available and a third team from the North Division will get into the GLIAC tournament.
This means if Malone finishes third, NMU can finish eighth overall in the league and reach the tournament. If either Hillsdale or Tiffin, who are a game back of Malone at 8-13, can finish third through a tiebreaker, then NMU would need to finish seventh overall.
So here are the simplest scenarios that get NMU into the GLIAC tournament, with many more existing based on GLIAC South tiebreakers:
— NMU clinches a GLIAC tournament spot and would be the No. 7 seed with a win at Michigan Tech AND a Saginaw Valley State loss at Northwood.
— NMU clinches a GLIAC tournament spot with a Malone win at Walsh.
— NMU clinches a GLIAC tournament spot with a Tiffin loss at Ohio Dominican AND a Hillsdale loss at Findlay.
If Northern loses at Tech, Malone loses at Walsh and Hillsdale and/or Tiffin win on the road Saturday, then it’s up to some obscure tiebreakers.
I have contacted the GLIAC office in hopes it can clear up what would happen should NMU and Malone both lose, and either Tiffin or Hillsdale win. If I get a response, I’ll post it here on the blog.
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