After another frustrating weekend, the Huskies find themselves in a rough spot again. Losing at UNH was rough, but even loss in a seemingly meaningless game to Harvard has dug Northeastern an even bigger hole. With even more questions raised than answers found, this team finds it self in a must-win scenario against Providence this weekend if they hope to make the playoffs. It actually could work out quite nicely. If Northeastern (7-12-2 HE, 16 points, 11-14-3 overall) can win both games at home against Providence (10-10-1 HE, 21 points, 12-14-2 overall), they can gain 4 points on the Friars with the same amount of games in hand, and find themselves just a point behind. The interesting part is the remaining schedule. The Huskies have a tough couple of series after this one, with a home stand against high scoring Maine, and a home and home against BU to end the season. The interesting twist to this is that Providence has an arguably tougher one, with home and homes against BC and Lowell. Another very possible scenario is the case that UMass Amherst (tied with NU) sucks just as much if not worse than the Huskies.
So tonight, we’ll see if what should be a shaking up of the lines will help the Huskies. We could be seeing a much welcomed return of Steve Quailer to lineup tonight, and the right combination of lines could give this team a spark. There’s a slight possibility that Steve Morra will be playing tonight as well. If Rawlings can find his bearings and the defense can limit mistakes, Northeastern can pull ahead against a team that has its fair share of inconsistencies too. This is also a do or die for the coaching staff. Madigan and co. has shown that they will hold every player accountable for his actions off the ice. It’s about time the players are held accountable on the ice. You almost wish you could combine Cronin and Madigan; maybe have them on the same coaching staff. It certainly helps the current staff that Providence’s goaltending is struggling too, despite the team winning out last weekend.