Thursday, May 10, 2007

One Down, Two to Go...

In Columbus that is.

With this win, the Wildcats are two wins away from winning the 2007 Big Ten Tournament and cementing a top 5 seed (in my opinion) in the upcoming NCAA Tournament. There are two things I would like to reiterate from today's broadcast:

1. Erin Dyer will be the key hitter in the NU lineup throughout the post-season.

2. Northwestern would be best served by playing both Michigan and Ohio State in the next two rounds.

As I said in the pre-game show, 4th inning, 6th inning and post-game show, Erin Dyer is in a pivotal spot in the Northwestern lineup. As the #5 hitter, she is the transition hitter between Logan, Williams, Cooper and Pauly at the top and Rigas, Miller, Kelly Dyer and Sengewald at the bottom. Despite her .227 average coming into the Michigan State game, she can have a huge impact on the post-season because of her ability to drive the ball the other way and make opposing pitchers work. The key thing to remember is that she will see a lot of pitches to hit because of expected success of the top four hitters.

Secondly, Coach Drohan prides herself on the tough non-conference schedule she sets up every year. By scheduling the likes of Arizona, UCLA and Texas in the non-conference, the Big Ten schedule seems much easier. In this year's Big Ten Tournament, a similar dynamic could happen. Northwestern will need to be at the top of their game if they want to make a second straight run at the WCWS. With that being said, they need tough competition going into the tournament and what better appetizer than with one of the nation's top programs in the Michigan Wolverines and the Big Ten regular season champions, the Ohio State Buckeyes. The level of intensity surrounding these potential matchups would be the best case scenario for the 'Cats as they prepare for the upcoming NCAA Tournament.

Before signing off, I would like to say the entire Ohio State Buckeyes media staff has been nothing but helpful thus far. This softens my position on the university as a whole but I still took great joy in watching them get worked at the BCS Title game and the NCAA Hoops Title Game.

Until next time, blog dismissed.

1 comment:

Ryan said...

I agree that Dyer is the pivotal spot in the lineup. And the fact that she'll get good pitches is further backed-up by Rigas right behind - the Big Ten 2nd Team DP.

I don't know about that Top 5 seed, though. Granted it was a total surprise they were No.4 last year. But when I look at the field, Tennessee, Oklahoma, and Arizona are clearly above NU. I think LSU and Alabama are better as well. That leaves them top 8 (super-regional hosts), but beating Michigan and Ohio State could definitely help. Frankly, they seem like a lock for 6, with Texas A&M 7 and Baylor 8. The top 5 I'd make Tennessee 1, Arizona 2, Oklahoma 3, LSU 4, Alabama 5.