It was a day of upsets at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit, MI. The afternoon game saw Miami of Ohio (#3) defeating Notre Dame (#2) with a final score of 6 to 2. In a recent interview with head coach Enrico Blasi, we saw the commitment to hard work, excellence and dedication to a lost friend and mentor that was a driving force for this season. To read the interview, click here.
The all-Michigan game saw Western Michigan (#4) overcoming the University of Michigan (#1) by a score of 5 to 2. Coach Blashill was gracious enough to give some time for an interview earlier this week. You can read it here. And so Miami of Ohio will meet Western Michigan in the final game for the Mason Cup.
The undercurrent to this game shows an impressive feat being accomplished by the WMU Broncos. This trip to Joe Louis for the CCHA finals was the first in 17 years for Western Michigan. On top of that, our crew from Kalamazoo has found themselves with a spot in the NCAA tournament for the first time in 25 years. Not a bad first season for head coach Jeff Blashill.
And so, Coach Blashill will face Coach Blasi, a man for whom he was an assistant coach for 6 years. This is not a new feeling for the coach, as he faced his Alma Mater and former head coach Bob Daniels when the Broncos defeated the Ferris State Bulldogs.
However the tournament ends, both Miami of Ohio and Western Michigan University have shown that they came to play. The celebrations will be short lived as tomorrow's game looms closely by. Look for a much closer score than the finals from today's matchups. These are two teams who know how to grind it out to the end.