Trying to make sense of who is moving on and who is going home in the Division 1A hockey tournament is enough to drive a person crazy.
Once thing is certain ó take note Springfield Cathedral and St. Johnís (S) ó everyone is still alive.
Now we must try and make sense of it all as we head into the final day of Super 8 pool play Sunday.
First and foremost, the top two teams in each bracket will advance, with the top teams crossing over to play the second-place teams from the opposite bracket Wednesday night.
If two teams finished tied for a spot, then their head-to-head result from the tournament will determine who advances and who gets the higher seed. The tricky part comes when three teams finish tied, which lines up numerous tie breakers scenarios.
The first tie breaker in a three-way tie would be goal differential (goals scored minus goals allowed), the second is goals quotient (goals scored divided by goals allowed) and the third and fourth tiebreakers involve the same as the first two tiebreakers, but only in games that these three play against each other. If somehow nothing has been decided after all of that, the fifth and final tiebreaker will be won by the team that was seeded highest coming into the Super 8.
Both Malden Catholic (+3 goal differential) and St. Johnís Prep (+2 goal differential) are 2-0 atop their respective brackets and will advance with victories. If those two win out, then the next simplest formula would involve BC High (0 goal differential) and Central Catholic (0 goal differential), both currently 1-1, advancing with wins of their own.
Hingham (-1 goal differential) and St. Maryís (0 goal differential), also 1-1, will be facing the 2-0 teams, and if they can pull off victories, then we will surely see the tie breakers come into play.
Which brings us back to Springfield Cathedral (-2 goal differential) and St. Johnís (S) (-2 goal differential) who both sit at 0-2 and will need big wins to help their chances, but in doing so will also bring their opponents down to 1-2 with them. If either, or both, win then they will need the top seeds to finish 3-0 and force the three-way tie breakers to be implemented.
Last season we saw the three-way tiebreaker come into play, with Weymouth needing the second tiebreaker, goals quotient, to get into the crossover round.
BC High and St. Johnís (S) kick off Sundayís action at noon, followed by Malden Catholic vs. Hingham at 2:15 p.m., which will clear up the bracket 1 picture early in the day. If BC High wins in the first game then Hingham must beat MC, and by more than one goal for the purposes of tie breakers.
St. Maryís and St. Johnís Prep cap pool play at 7 p.m., following Central Catholic and Springfield Cathedral at 4:45 p.m. A Central Catholic victory will force St. Maryís hand in the nightcap.
If your head is not spinning after all of this, then you are more than ready for a full day of action at Lawler Arena, where things will begin to clear up as the day plays out.
Several reporters and editors contribute updates, news and analysis to the High School Sports Blog.
- Bob Holmes: A Reading resident (Go Rockets!) and Boston College graduate, Holmes is the Boston Globe High School Sports Editor. We remind you now that his weekly picks are often made in jest so everyone just calm down when he picks against Everett for 11 straight weeks. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeHolmes.
- Craig Larson: A native of West Springfield (Leo Durocher anyone? Tim Daggett?) and Curry College graduate (a proud Colonel!), Larson is the sports editor for the Globe's regional sections: South, West and North, as well as a frequent contributor on the college beat. Abington to Xaverian: it all starts with the schools. Have a compelling story idea? Contact him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeLars.
- Zuri Berry: Berry attended the same high school as sports legends O.J. Simpson and Joe DiMaggio. (Guess which one is his hero.) He's a South Boston resident (formerly of Eastie) and the editor of the High School Sports blog as well as the go-to-guy for everything high school sports on Boston.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @ZuriBerry for all of the latest updates.
Then there are our winter correspondents:
- Alex Hall | @AlexKHall | Baseball
- Colleen Casey | @ColleenCasey226 | Softball
- Mike Giesta | Boys lacrosse
- Catherine Calsolaro | @catrenee13 | Girls lacrosse
- Liz Torres | @etorres446 | Boys volleyball
To reach the high school sports department, e-mail email@example.com.