The Lakers won the only head-to-head match-up to date this season by a three-goal margin, 5-2, at Plattsburgh's Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena. Despite that result, the Cardinals received one more first place vote than Oswego State in the poll. That has some Lakers fans, including yours truly, with their panties in a wad.
Meanhile, Plattsburgh fans don't seem to mind the tie. Here is a sample of what the fans are saying over at the USCHO.com Division III forum:
ME: Just so I've got this right, there are eight people out there who think Plattsburgh is better than Oswego? Eight!? The Lakers beat the Cards by three...in Plattsburgh...in a game in which Plattsburgh never led, and Plattsburgh is #1 in your poll?
And, just a heads up, the first person that responds to this with a SOG mention will be taken out back and shot. It doesn't matter how many times your scorekeeper says you hit Kyle Gunn-Taylor with the puck.
USCHO SUNYAC Writer Russell Jaslow: So, if Potsdam upsets Plattsburgh this weekend, they should be #1?
A poll takes in not only a whole season but how well you are playing right now. If Plattsburgh had beaten Norwich, I would have voted them #1. Instead, I stuck with Oswego, but it was a close decision.
And I put Salem State in the middle in my poll. You lose by one goal to a ranked team and then beat SNC, heck shut them out, and haven't lost any other game this year, you deserve a good spot in the poll.
Forum User mjbeckman: But Russell, the poll is to be based on who is the best team in the country overall, and that has to be determined on entire body of work. And if you put records side by side (even if the Cards knocked off Norwich), Oswego 5 - Plattsburgh 2 at Stafford has to trump everything else, no?
As an Oswego alum, the #1 ranking (even shared) is pretty dang cool. But the longer the 1 in the L column on the Lakers' record remains the same while the number in the W column grows, the happier I'll be.
Forum User one_to7: Even though voters tend to emphasize the last few games, your ranking is generally based on the body of your whole season. Plattsburgh has had more games, and consequently more wins (and yes, one more loss), than norwich.
Home ice does count for something as well. Anyone voting Norwich #1 over a team they tied at norwich is using something other than logic, in my opinion.
Forum User LakerFan11: I don't feel at least at this time of the season that Oswego and Plattsburgh should be tied for #1. Now I would say that they are most certainly 1-2, but just the fact that Oswego beat Plattsburgh at Stafford by three goals should at this time give Oswego a slim lead in votes over Platty.
On top of that Plattsburgh also tied Norwich( and lost the Primelink championship in a shootout). If they had won that game I would most certainly say the teams deserve to be tied and may even put Plattsburgh ahead.
Yet Oswego at this point should be alone (by a slim margin mind you) at the top followed by Plattsburgh.
Forum User LoudHorns31: now Ryan, I understand where your coming from, but look at Oswego's season as a whole. they beat Plattsburgh, and I know that's your sticking point. they split with Elmira and beat Utica. and I'm not taking into account the rest of the SUNY games because both Plattsburgh and Oswego have beaten common opponents within the division.
now look at the "uncommon" opponents:
Elmira: (whom Plattsburgh still has to play in Jan.) has a loss to Oswego, and Morrisville.
Utica: has lost to Oswego, a tie and loss to Neumann and a loss to Potsdam.
so the "better" teams that Oswego is playing are losing games that they should not be against what most would consider weaker teams.
now, I'm not a voter, but I will give you my opinion and honestly I don't think that either Plattsburgh or Oswego should be #1 in the country. and honestly, I don't know who should be. while I'm a Plattsburgh fan, and have been happy with their season so far, a loss to Oswego is a disappointment in my eyes. and it's tough for me to argue Oswego's case with losses to teams who don't seem to be as strong as they were last year, especially with losses to "lower" teams. (sarcasm on) Heck, why not just give Adrian #1.... :D
ME: No. This isn't an argument of, "if team A beats team B, team A should always be ranked higher." I'm taking the teams' bodies of work over the entire season into consideration.
On one hand, you have Oswego. They've won a lot of games in convincing fashion and have victories over the co-#1 (by 3 goals on the road) and #6 (by 5 goals) teams in the nation. They have one loss (again to the #6 team in the nation, by a score of 2-1 on the road).
On the other hand, you have Plattsburgh. They've won a lot of games in convincing fashion and have a victory over the #8 (by 2 goals, neutral site) and a tie with the #5 (on the road) team in the nation.
I just don't see how anyone could make a case for Plattsburgh being #1 when you add all of that up. And I didn't even mention the fact that the co-#1 Oswego beat by three goals on the road IS Plattsburgh.
LoudHorns31: I'm GUESSING that since both teams have one loss (yes I realize that Plattsburghs loss is to Oswego) that some posters are actually looking at Strength of Schedule. and saying that Plattsburghs schedule is a bit tougher than Oswego's. again thats what I'm guessing. and like I said before, I don't see either team as #1 in the country right now, but I guess we'll have to settle for sharing the #1 seat for this week.
Forum User Stormy8174: Just glancing through some previous posts I saw some back and forth on the 1-2 (or should I say 1-1) Oswego-Plattsburgh tie atop the poll. This may be throwing some fuel into a fire but aside the argument of why it is the way it is, more importantly...I would say is...why does Plattsburgh have more first place votes then Oswego?
Plattsburg has played
Oswego (1) – Oswego was I think 5 or 6 that week Oz defeated them in Plattsburgh?
Middlebury (8) – Platty beats Middlebury
Norwich (5) – Platty ties Norwich
Oswego has played
Elmira (6) x2 – Oswego wins one at home easy and loses a close on the road.
Plattsburgh (2) – Oswego defeats Platty (see above)
How would it then be that Oswego gets less first place votes then Platty?
Oh...who cares I guess
Jaslow: What happens if say Oswego suddenly had 10 of their top players injured in practice and out for the season? Would you then say that Oswego is the best team in the country?
When Oswego played Plattsburgh, they were better than Plattsburgh. But what many voters are saying is right now at this time, Plattsburgh is the better team. In other words, what they are saying is if these two teams met tomorrow, they believe Plattsburgh would win.
I don't understand why people cannot understand that concept when some voters cast their ballots.
BTW, for all those folks arguing with me, did you miss the part where I said [B][I]I picked[/I][/B] Oswego #1?
Forum User Spwood: Ryan, prepare to "take me out back and shoot me": if you were at the Plattsburgh game, Oswego was outplayed in that game. Oswego won the game against a goaltender playing his second varsity game. Do I think Plattsburgh is the #1 team in the country? I don't know...but since I come at it from a Cardinal perspective (and can admit it) and you come at it with green and gold colored glasses, maybe we aren't the most objective folks to make that call...
Forum User CARDS_rule_the_Burgh: I'm a Plattsburgh fan, and I'm perfectly fine sharing the #1 ranking with Oswego. I just wish it could be like this when the Cardinals make the trip out to Oz... the rivalry has never been more tense (and nationally significant*)! Assuming both teams run the table until that point, I would definitely enjoy watching the Cardinals take that #1 ranking from the Lakers in Campus center (what was the record between the 2 teams in that particular arena, again?)
*Note that I am not considering the 1987 Nation Championship to be "Nationally Significant", because its significance was erased by the NCAA Committee on Infractions
spwood: Actually, I don't have a problem sharing it with Oswego. I'm not sure either team is #1 right now. My point was the Oswego fan that just knows Oswego is the best team on the planet (at the very least, much better than Plattsburgh) and wanted to take any fan that disputes his claim "out back and shot". For those that weren't at the game, Oswego was ahead 3-2 late in the third and scored on a 2-1 (because the Plattsburgh defense was pinching in late to get the tying goal) and scored on an empty-net goal. Hardly total domination.
Both teams have played tough schedules. Both have tough games coming up (including one with each other). I think we've all, myself included, wasted a lot of energy on an argument no one can (or should) win. It's a meaningless November poll.
Forum User 93GreatLaker: The reason there are no Plattsburgh complaints is because you have nothing to back it up. You lost to Oswego, its a fact. It does not matter who was outplayed. When all else is equal (records, goals for, goals against, etc) head to head is the trump card. While Oswego may not be the best team in the country (they haven't played Adrian, St Norberts), at the moment, they are better than Plattsburgh. Oswego has done nothing to this point in the season that would indicate otherwise.
This could all change next month when they meet again, but until then, Plattsburgh is the 2nd best team in the SUNYAC, live with it.
PSUChamps2001: point wise yes, never dissagreed with that...if I got outshot and outskated like Oswego did, I'd be ashamed to say that we are the "best" team....
the cockyness of some of the fans will make it that much better when we walk out of the cc with another win...hopefully the Lakers dont TANK it again and we can walk out of the cc again in March with another win...
93GreatLaker: Outshot, yes. Outskated, maybe. Truth is goalies are a part of the game and Oswego's was better. Plattsburgh won a National Championship a few years back being outshot by a large margin, as did Oswego. I doubt either team is ashamed of their National Championship. They don't award a W in the win column for having the most shots or time of possession. Its how many goals you score in comparison to the other team. Oswego 5 - Plattsburgh 2. Today that is the only stat that matters.
LoudHorns31: Yes, on that night Oswego was the team that came out on top and won the game. if all that mattered was one game then there would be a lot of teams in the #1 spot. you have to look at the ENTIRE SEASON, not just one game. if one voter had moved Oswego or Plattsburgh down just one spot on their ballot then we wouldn't be having this convo.
And it didn't end there. All told, there are more than 200 posts in the thread, most of them chiming in on the Plattsburgh/Oswego debate. The two No. 1's will return to the ice Friday when Oswego State hosts Brockport and Plattsburgh hosts Potsdam. The Cardinals will then take nearly a month off before returning to action on Jan. 1. The Lakers will welcome Geneseo on Saturday and travel to Utica on Tuesday as they continue an eight-day stretch in which they will play five times.