Hoping to start a better streak in CCHA Week 7

By Ryan Stieg 

Have you ever taken pride in mediocrity? I’ve never considered it until this week, but this streak that I’m currently on is worth at least a small dose of pride.  

After going winless with my CCHA picks a few weeks ago, I’d gone through an impressively weak stretch of winning just one series each week and that streak was extended last weekend. I was right that Michigan Tech and Bemidji State would split and I even picked the games correctly. However, I then whiffed on Lake Superior State-Northern Michigan, Minnesota State-Ferris State, Augustana-Lindenwood and even St. Thomas-Bowling Green. That last one hurt the most.  

Well, here’s my chance to either drive out of the long ditch I’m currently stuck in, or continue to only peek the hood of my car out and get just one win again. So, where should I begin with my Week 7 predictions? Well, there’s an in-state rivalry series just an hour south of where I live, so let’s start there.  

Bemidji State at Minnesota State 

After sweeping St. Thomas three weeks ago, the Beavers have gone on an up and down stretch. They got swept at LSSU and then appeared on the verge of getting swept again by Tech last week, but instead, Bemidji rallied from a 4-goal deficit and defeated the Huskies to force a split. It’s the biggest Division I comeback in Beavers history and BSU is rolling into this weekend with momentum. However, the Mavericks are also sitting pretty right now after a sweep at Ferris. I thought maybe they’d be a little rusty after a week off, but Mankato proved me wrong. Since both teams are currently feeling good, I’ll pick a split. The Mavs win Friday 4-3, but the Beavers win Saturday 3-2.  

Alaska Fairbanks at Northern Michigan 

Two weeks ago, the Wildcats were swept at St. Thomas, and they looked rough both nights. But then last week, NMU bounced back and swept Lake State at home to get back on the right track, so the ‘Cats are confounding me now. Northern will be tested this week by the Nanooks, who, I think, are quickly becoming a lot of people’s second favorite hockey program due to their ability to succeed despite being a small, independent program. I think the Wildcats are playing better, but I also think Alaska forces a split in Marquette. NMU wins Friday 5-4, but the Nanooks win Saturday 4-3.  

Bowling Green at Lake Superior State 

The Falcons seem to be wandering in a daze right now and I wonder when they’re going to finally snap out of it. They didn’t look good at home against the Tommies last week and the road doesn’t get easier with a Lakers squad that’s playing better than expected. At the same time, that same LSSU team just got swept by rival NMU, so maybe it’s starting to slowly come back to earth. Seeing how Lake State is slipping a bit, I’m going to pick another split. The Lakers win Friday 3-2, but the Falcons win Saturday 4-3.  

Ferris State at Michigan Tech 

Right now, every team outside of St. Thomas is hard to figure out, but these two squads are tied for the top spot. The Bulldogs seem to be up and down every week, while the Huskies just can’t seem to get it together despite being the consensus pick to win the league during the preseason. I thought Tech had started to find the right gear after sweeping Augustana and then being on track to sweep Bemidji as well, but then Huskies blew a four-goal lead and lost Saturday. So now, I’m back to being confused by MTU. Since Tech continues to perplex me, I’ll go with another split. The Huskies win Friday 5-2, but the Bulldogs win Saturday 3-2.  

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