Peninsula Pirates.

Peninsula Pirates.

COLLEGE MEN’S BASKETBALL: Pirates face potentially muddy playoff scenarios

However, if the Pirates win, they can avoid tiebreaking mess

PORT ANGELES — The Peninsula College men can make it simple for themselves and like the old Oakland Raiders, just win, baby.

Because if the Pirates’ basketball team loses Wednesday night, it can get really complicated and they might have to play not one, but two extra games.

The Pirates are facing a potentially complex tiebreaking scenario to make the NWAC Tournament going into Wednesday’s game at Shoreline.

The best-case scenario is the Pirates beat Shoreline on Wednesday and they’re in the NWAC Tournament as a No. 3 seed from the North Region.

The North Region is highly competitive this year with six teams within three games of each other. Peninsula currently sits tied with Everett for third place at 7-6. Whatcom and Shoreline are lurking one game behind at 6-7.

Everett (10-3) and Skagit Valley (8-5) are in the postseason as the No. 1 and No. 2 seeds. Four teams are picked from each region for the NWAC Tournament.

It just so happens that Peninsula is playing Shoreline and Everett is playing Whatcom in the final games of the regular season. In a worst-case scenario, Shoreline beats Peninsula and Whatcom beats Everett, creating a four-way tie for two playoff spots with all four teams at 7-7.

One of the tiebreakers is how well the teams have fared against the teams in the region with the best records. Peninsula split with North Region champion Edmonds, so the Pirates have a small advantage there.

Peninsula College Dean of Athletics Rick Ross said if the Pirates lose, coaches will meet on a conference call, possibly as early as Wednesday night, to set dates and locations for possible tiebreaking games.

If two teams are tied for the final playoff spot, they will meet in a tiebreaking play-in game at the site of the school with the best tiebreaking scenario. If three teams are tied for the final spot, one team with the best tiebreaking position will get a bye while the other two play. The winner of that game would then play a second game against the team with the bye. That is something the Pirates badly want to avoid, Ross said, because “that’s a lot of basketball games in a short period of time” heading into the NWAC Tournament.

As muddy as the situation is, it actually could have been worse if Bellevue (5-8) had won its game Sunday against Edmonds. If Bellevue had won, there could have ended up being a five-way tie for the North Region’s final two playoff spots.

The men’s game is at 7 p.m. and can be streamed at the NWAC Network. The Peninsula College women (13-0, 20-2), the North Region champion and winners of 16 straight games, play Shoreline at 5 p.m.

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