Friday, April 24, 2015

Pivotal Weekend In The MAAC

Games played at the Demske Sports Complex may decide site of MAAC Championship
After this weekend's series of MAAC doubleheaders, we may have a clearer picture of who will be in this season's tournament (six teams qualify), and where that tournament will be played.

Manhattan, currently in first place, makes a western trip this weekend. Their doubleheader at Canisius is setting up to be the games of the season thus far. It's likely this will be a battle for first place, and this season that means the opportunity to host the tournament. These games will be played on Sunday.

Marist broke a conference slump when they beat Quinnipiac in extra innings last weekend, but the Red Foxes have more work to do in order to qualify for the tournament. They are at the moment on the outside looking in, but one of the teams they are chasing, Monmouth, will be in Poughkeepsie Saturday for a crucial MAAC doubleheader. A sweep by either team means tiebreaker superiority.

Siena has an opportunity, with four conference games at home, to solidify their standing in the top six. They will host Rider and Monmouth. Speaking of Rider, they will (realistically) need a sweep of games this weekend to keep their hopes alive. After playing the Saints on Saturday, they will travel to Quinnipiac. QU also needs a sweep to stay alive, and they have been playing better as of late. The Bobcats will face a tough test at Iona on Saturday. The Gaels have been among the hottest teams in the MAAC, and a sweep for them would virtually clinch a spot in the tournament. Fairfield still has an opportunity to host the tournament (as they did last season, under the old format). They will play at Marist on Sunday. Niagara is still mathematically alive, but can't afford losses. St. Peter's has been eliminated.

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