The word ont he street coming into this weekend was that in Buffalo won their game against Ithaca by seven goals and Illinois failed to win both of their games by seven goals UB would pick up the last at large bid to nationals.
The word on the street was wrong. It feels like last season all over again.
Syracuse will represent the NECHL after winning the regular season league title on a one goal tie breaker with the Bulls but they, and West Virginia took two seats at the table despite not being ranked in the top 20. Once again UB was a hairs breath away from winning the regular season title and is barely outside the ranking needed for an at-tlarge.
A week ago Illinois lost two games to Iowa state which put UB at #18 but Buffalo only had one game this weekend to hold that spot while the Illini had two games to overtake the Bulls.
UB upended Ithaca 7-0 and Illinois failed to blow IUP out of the water in their second game of the weekend but what happened was enough to sink Buffalo to #19 in the ACHA rankings and as a result put UB one spot out of the national tournament.
Once again UB will enter the NECHL championship tournament playing for pride and a shot at repeating as the leagues final champions.