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Playoff possibility on ice ... for now

By Neil H. Devlin, Mullen Sports Information Director
'Stangs in temporary quarantine from Colorado Academy game, but still in the chase for Class 4A's wild-card spot in the frozen four.
For Mullen ice hockey, it’s an interesting week that has the extremes of lows and highs.

Early this week, the Mustangs, who beat Colorado Academy 6-5 in overtime the past Saturday, were informed that a CA player tested positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19). As a result, they were forced into a mandatory quarantine, including head coach Devon Brady.

It also meant that Mullen’s two games in Colorado Springs, Monday against Liberty and Tuesday against Rampart, were not permitted to happen and could possibly erase its playoff hopes.

However, with Crested Butte beating Battle Mountain, Mullen remains very much in the postseason picture, according to Brady.

“We’re still breathing,” he said.

The Mustangs could land the at-large berth. Just four teams will advance to next week’s frozen four for the new Class 4A – the three league champions and the best runner-up.

Mullen is 7-3 and all three losses were to Kent Denver by an aggregate 12-7 despite outshooting the Sun Devils 138-68. They blew a couple of two-goal leads, but remain in promising shape in the RPI and two polls (Coaches and MaxPreps), the formula key to determining the last part of the field.

Kent Denver is first in RPI and Mullen third.

“We are in much, much better shape than we were,” Brady said on Wednesday.

The Budweiser Events Center in Loveland will be the site for final rounds. The 4A semifinals will be at 5:30 and 8 p.m. on Wednesday, March 17, and the championship game on Thursday, March 18 at 5:30 p.m.

Brady said the fourth team in the field could be determined as soon as Thursday, March 11.