Friday, February 22, 2008

Basketball's Top Games

It's the final day of the basketball regular season and what we know just about equals what we don't know. We know four of the five playoff teams on both the men's and women's side, but the fifth spot remains open. We know we're going to Collegeville for the men's final four on Saturday, but don't know if we're headed to Allentown, Carlisle or Lancaster for the women. We'll be in Maryland on Wednesday for the men's opening round game, but don't know if we're going to Baltimore or Westminster. It could be a doubleheader with the women in Westminster ... or we could be in Gettysburg. So many questions ... with answers to come around 6 p.m. Saturday night.

Dickinson at Franklin & Marshall (Women's Basketball)
2 p.m. -- The Red Devils (14-3 CC, 16-7) travel to take on the Diplomats (13-4, 18-6) in a critical game in the chase for the top seed and homecourt. A Dickinson win and a Muhlenberg loss gives the Devils the top seed ... an F&M win and a Muhlenberg loss gives the Diplomats the No. 1 spot. The Red and White has won six straight in the series to close the all-time series deficit to 36-26.

Ursinus at Muhlenberg (Women's Basketball)
By the 4 p.m. tip-off, the Mules (14-3, 19-5) will know what a victory over the Bears (10-7, 12-12) would mean for their playoff seeding. A victory and a Dickinson loss would give 'Berg the top seed ... a loss and an F&M win sends the quintet to Lancaster. An Ursinus triumph ... and a Gettysburg loss to McDaniel ... keeps the Bears' playoff hopes alive and sends the accountants to the spreadsheet to figure out a strength-of-schedule tiebreaker. Muhlenberg won the year's first meeting on Jan. 30 by a 61-49 count to take a 31-26 series lead. UC has only won once at Memorial Hall since 2000.

McDaniel at Gettysburg (Women's Basketball)
4 p.m. -- It's simple really ... the Bullets (11-6, 15-9) clinch the final playoff spot and homecourt for Wednesday's first-round game with a win against the Green Terror (11-6, 13-11). A loss, combined with an Ursinus win against Muhlenberg, brings strength of schedule into the equation. A loss, combined with an Ursinus loss, sends Gettysburg to Westminster Wednesday night. A McDaniel win gives the Green and Gold the No. 4 seed and home court for Wednesday's first-round game. The Orange and Blue broke a 10-game losing streak to McDaniel with an 87-76 victory on Jan. 30, but still trails the all-time series, 42-30.

Ursinus at Muhlenberg (Men's Basketball)
2 p.m. -- Another simple one ... a 'Berg victory send the Mules (8-9, 10-14) to the playoffs. All they have to do is knock of the 17th ranked Bears (17-0, 22-2), who are going for the first 18-0 season since the Conference went to a full double round-robin schedule in 2004. Ursinus has won 16 straight, including an 81-60 victory vs. Muhlenberg on Jan. 30. The Mules have defeated the Bears in the season finale each of the past two seasons to qualify as the No. 5 seed to the CC tournament.

Dickinson at Franklin & Marshall (Men's Basketball)
4 p.m. -- We'll know the results of the Ursinus-Muhlenberg game by the time this one tips off, so it will mean everything in the playoff chase ... or just pride in the 152nd meeting between the two rivals. A Red Devil (8-9, 12-11) victory, combined with a Mule loss, gives Dickinson the fifth playoff berth. A Mule loss and a Diplomat (7-10, 12-12) victory, combined with a Hopkins win against Washington, gives F&M the last spot in the field. If all three teams are tied at 8-10 ... and McDaniel beats Gettysburg and Washington beats Hopkins ... Muhlenberg gets the last slot. Just press the "easy" button.

So how can you keep up with everything going on Saturday around the Conference gymnasiums? We'll be blogging throughout the day to keep everyone posted on what promises to be a wild and wacky final day. You can also follow these links --

(W) Dickinson at Franklin & Marshall - Live Stats / Pay-per-View video

(W) Ursinus at Muhlenberg - Live Stats

(W) McDaniel at Gettysburg - Live Stats

(M) Ursinus at Muhlenberg - Live Stats

(M) Dickinson at Franklin & Marshall - Live Stats / Pay-per-View video

(M) McDaniel at Gettysburg - Live Stats

(M) Washington at Johns Hopkins - Gametracker

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