Two UAA teams are playing in Anchorage on Thursday but the Seawolves' biggest game of the night could be the one in Bellingham, Washington.
The men's team plays the first of four straight road games when it takes on Western Washington on Thursday.
It's an important game for the Seawolves, who are tied with the Nanooks of UAF for sixth place in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference. The top six teams will advance to the GNAC tournament March 1-3 in Anchorage.
With four games left in the regular season, UAA is part of a five-team race for the final three playoff spots. Western Oregon (15-1) and Western Washington (13-3) have clinched playoffs spots and Saint Martin's (12-5) is close to clinching.
The remaining three spots are up for grabs among five teams — Central Washington (9-7), Seattle Pacific (9-8), UAA (8-8), UAF (8-8) and Northwest Nazarene (7-9). Montana State-Billings (5-11) is all but out of the picture, and Simon Fraser (3-13) and Concordia (0-16) have both been eliminated from contention.
The Seawolves and Nanooks play the same four teams in the final games of the regular season. UAF plays Saint Martin's on Thursday, and then swaps foes with UAA on Saturday.
In Anchorage, the hockey team makes a rare Thursday appearance at Sullivan Arena for the first of two games against Bowling Green, and the women's basketball team plays Seattle Pacific, the only conference team to beat the Seawolves this season.
The hockey team (2-24-4 overall, 2-19-3 Western Collegiate Hockey Association) is out of playoff contention as it heads into its final home series of the season against Bowling Green (17-9-6, 14-5-5).
It's a Thursday-Friday series instead of a Friday-Saturday series to accommodate Bowling Green's travel schedule, UAA sports information director Ian Marks said.
The women's basketball team has clinched a spot in the GNAC playoffs and is all but certain to make the NCAA Tournament. The Seawolves (22-2, 15-1) are ranked fourth in the nation.
Curiously, the Seawolves were ranked second in the first West Region rankings of the season, which were announced Wednesday. Taking the No. 1 spot was Asuza Pacific, which is 24-3 and ranked 19th in the nation.
The West Region rankings are critical, because typically whichever team is ranked No. 1 in the final poll gets to host the eight-team West Region tournament.