Last weekend, UNO swept St. Cloud State, capped by a frantic third-period comeback to turn a 3-0 deficit into a 4-3 victory. Next up for the Mavs this weekend is #7 Wisconsin as UNO begins a killer final month of the season where they play teams in top half of the conference standings. After this weekend, the Mavs head north to Alaska-Anchorage, return home to face #4 Denver before finishing up the season at #3 Minnesota-Duluth. (Think Nebraska's football schedule next season is tough?)
The Mavs are sitting on the inside of the bubble for the NCAA tournament at this point, but this schedule gives UNO the ability to either rocket up or fall out of contention depending on how they perform. And right now, I get the feeling UNO is poised to make a great run down the stretch. It might be easy to make too much of the UNO's midseason swoon, as UNO never really collapsed in those games. They just lost some close games against some lesser foes, sometimes with some incredibly unlucky bounces of the puck. Like the week before against Alabama-Huntsville. UNO peppered UAH goalie Clarke Saunders with 59 shots, and he stopped 58 of 'em. Go figure.
UNO has played well against the top level competition all season, sweeping Minnesota and splitting with Michigan and North Dakota. The North Dakota games were all classics, showing that UNO can play with anybody in the country at this point.
Friday night, UNO is going to attempt once again to sell out the Qwest Center. As of last count, just over 3,000 tickets remained, making it likely that UNO will break their attendance record set last season. I have the feeling that it's going to be quite the series this weekend.